Your Space Or Mine
It shouldn’t work really should it? The epitome of urban discontent, graphic lament of the disenfranchised, ingenious scripts wrought on the skin of our cities that all, in short, say ‘I’m Here!’, ‘Here!’, ‘And Here!’ No, freestyle graffiti wouldn’t normally sit right on billboards, not unless they’d been hijacked.
The #medicineonthewall collaboration between Dr John Lee of Bristol University’s iBA programme in Medical Humanities and the People’s Republic of Stokes Croft (aka the ‘PRSC’ who, from 2007, have been at the forefront of defending public spaces, cultural freedoms and promoting alternative voices across the city) brings together local graffiti writers and street artists – including Ryder, Decay, Uncredited, 3dom and Sepr – to prescribe ‘Graphic Medicine’ on urban walls.
Lee explains, “#medicineonthewalls resists the notion of a standard patient with a standard disease, it tries to make an emotional engagement with medicine and health, reaching out to diverse publics in ways that can outpace official channels of communication.”
What’s a progressive healthcare initiative and radical activist enterprise doing teaming up with the epitome of commerce: a creative out-of-home agency family? That said, over the years the BUILDHOLLYWOOD family has fine form when it comes to enlightened partnerships supporting ethical, community driven projects. And this #medicineonthewalls Your Space Or Mine collaboration with BUILDHOLLYWOOD is another great example.
So, because not everyone has a home in which to shelter, the phrase ‘Stay In’ appears on boards across town. In place of getting names up, occupying risky territory, for the time being #medicineonthewalls has bought counterculture in from the cold. Dynamic, dripping, shattered scripts that usually occupy brickwork, bridges, trains or highpoints in the townscape, have given voice, generously lent their spraycan banditry, to a cause that has everyone’s well-being at heart.