Graffiti artists spray out ideas for exhibition

A group of young graffiti artists from Netanya has come up with a novel suggestion that would harness the teenagers' talents while beautifying the city at the same time, reports The group has asked city officials to be allowed to spray-paint old and ugly buildings around the city with the aim of making them more attractive and creating a city-wide exhibition of graffiti art. According to the report, the youths have long been known for their night-time graffiti activities on the walls of the local cultural center and other municipal buildings, and even earned the name "Na'arei Haheichal" as a result. The city's youth welfare officials made special efforts to find and reach out to the group and have been meeting with them regularly, with the result that the amount of graffiti on Netanya's buildings has dropped significantly. Recently, the youngsters met with municipal education and youth officials, including Youth Forum head Rabbi Moshe Lahover, and suggested that they be given permission to graffiti selected sites around the city. One of the teens said that many in the group wanted to use their talents to contribute something to the city. The report said the officials expressed enthusiasm for the idea, with Rabbi Lahover saying that many cities around the world had areas dedicated to graffiti art, and Netanya would "only benefit" by harnessing the youngsters' talents. "The benefit is double - on the one hand, there will not be uncontrolled graffiti drawings, and on the other hand, old buildings will get a new touch, fresh and artistic," Lahover said. Other officials said that an exhibition of graffiti art would attract artists from around the country and from an educational perspective was first-rate. The report said the project could even be sponsored by paint companies, making it relatively inexpensive.