Testaccio Slaughterhouse Street Art
Earlier this week, a professor of mine turned me on to an amazing place. Across the river, in the gentrifying community of Testaccio, is a former slaughterhouse. The complex is huge, and different parts of it are being used for difficult purposes, including the architecture department of one of Rome’s universities. But behind that, is some of the best street art/graffiti I have ever seen.
I don’t think it’s unfair to say that street art is big right now. In fact, the New York Times’ travel section currently features this article on NYC street art, and a less stodgy one about Berlin’s street art, which I will be sure to report on after I visit Berlin as part of spring break. Rome certainly has a lot of street art, especially graffiti. The slaughterhouse seems to serve as a sort of proving ground. It’s a place with a lot of high, blank walls, and well, it’s an abandoned slaughterhouse, which is cool. There are some tags that are clearly old, but there is clearly innovation as well.
Typographically, graffiti tags are interesting to me because a clear understanding of form, composition, and color are essential. However, legibility is often sacrificed, which I have to admit irks me a little. That doesn’t mean I don’t love looking at them though — this place is an awesome find. I took a lot pictures; look your heart out.