I’m living in your city for more than three years and I mostly enjoyed it. I work here, I study here and I try to enjoy your cultural offers as often as possible. During these three years there happened a lot of positive things and, in my opinion, negative things.
For example I don’t like the matter of fact that your police officers try to prove their strength every weekend when people play soccer at the Sielwall corner. I also don’t like the fact that the skate plaza at the central station had to move because of an upcoming shopping mall but what I dislike most is the way some politicians and residents treat art or rather artists.
In the context of this years’ jazz ahead! festival a lot of foreign artist visited the hanseatic city to entertain the audience or to compare notes with other artists. Some of these artists are members of the well-known art collective broken fingaz crew who inter alia were invited to play music and to paint some walls. The hereby created artworks are so impressive, that the Bremen’s mayor Jens Böhrnsen at least said that their “wall is a wonderful present and a unique example for the intensive friendship between Haifa and Bremen”. And to be honest he was right.
What some of you might not know is the fact that the broken fingaz crew painted a piece on the right hand side while some members of the Jukebox Cowboys painted another wonderful piece on the left hand side. Both parts looked wonderful and were a real crowd puller. “Looked” and “were” because on tuesday this week the city began to remove the jbcb artwork. The reasons for that are up to now blurry. Some of the artists told me that a few politicians didn’t like their wall because it looked too much like a graffiti, some other people told me, that the jbcb part wasn’t approved. The last one is hard to believe because if the wall hadn’t been approved why weren’t the artists stopped during their work?
Besides the fact that I like art I also studied art history and art education therefore I think that I know what I’m talking about. And in a nutshell what is happening there sucks. I know that a lot of cities or governments try to eliminate street art and especially graffiti. For example Sao Paulo does that with Os Gemeos’ artworks. To quote one of the things I was told during childhood “when someone jumps off a bridge do you jump off too?” Don’t get me wrong I’m not going to compare apples and oranges but in some ways it the same problem.
Up to now they removed the anchor, the J and the K but it’s hard to believe that the government endures an _u_ebox Cowboys artwork so the rest will probably be removed within the next days. That sucks and I don’t see why that had to happen.