Graffiti are writings or drawings that have been scribbled, scratched, or painted illicitly on a wall or other surface, often within public view. It ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. In modern times, paint (particularly spray paint) and marker pens have become the most commonly used graffiti materials. In most countries, marking or painting property without the property owners’ or governments’ permission is considered defacement and vandalism, which is a punishable crime. Graffiti also expresses underlying social and political messages and a whole genre of artistic expression is based upon spray paint graffiti styles. Countries like Kenya and Uganda have a relatively rich culture of graffiti and now Ethiopian graffiti artists are slowly emerging with the aim of advancing this urban art, writes
– Tibebeselassie Tigabu.
The text reads, “Describe your MP Vulture” but MP (Member of Parliament) has been crossed out with red paint. A list of options is given: “Thieves, Warmonger, Leech, Greedy, Arrogant and Vulture”. It is graffiti on a wall in Nairobi which criticizes Kenya’s corrupt politicians.
These words on the wall were sourced from Kenyans who submitted one word online describing Kenyan MPs. This graffiti is a satirical political art that describes Kenyan political figures and elites as vultures.
Land grabbing, political assassinations, tax evasion and post-election violence were also some of the descriptions of the existing Kenyan government. Next to it is an uplifting message of the unified Kenyan voice. “Power to the people! I will be the change I want to see! My voice, my vote our vote! Real change is possible! Ballot revolution!”