Graffiti and Street Art
Street art began with graffiti and was closely tied to hip hop culture. In New York in the 1970s, colorful writings on the wall were part of the city landscape. Relatively early on, they were accepted by the art world at large and artists like Keith Haring began to employ the techniques used in the graffiti scene. New York made graffiti art popular.
While both are statements in public spaces, graffiti focuses on the written whereas street art, the visual.
Richard Art Hambleton
Richard Art Hambleton born in 1952 in Vancouver, British Columbia. He was a surviving member of a group that emerged from the New York City art scene during the booming art market of the 1980s, which also included Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Hambleton's early public art included his Image Mass Murder art. From 1976 to 1978 Hambleton painted a police "chalk" outline around bodies of volunteer "homicide victims."
Keith Haring was born in 1958, in Reading, Pennsylvania. Haring opened the field of possibility for how seemingly simple and even cartoony elements by self-taught or less-schooled artists might be appreciated. Haring's deceptively simple imagery and text provided poignant and cutting cultural commentary on issues including AIDS, drug addiction, illicit love, and apartheid. As both an artist and an activist he established that depicting serious issues could be fun or at least lively when communicated through highly cartoony images and fresh and vivid choices of colors.