Street Art is a very popular form of art that is spreading quickly all over the world. You can find it on buildings, sidewalks, street signs and trash cans from Tokyo to Paris, from Moscow to Cape Town. Street art has become a global culture and even art museums and galleries are collecting the work of street artists.
Street art started out very secretly because it is illegal to paint public and private property without permission. People often have different opinions about street art. Some think it is a crime and others think it is a very beautiful new form of culture.
Art experts claim that the movement began in New York in the 1960s. Young adults sprayed words and other images on walls and trains. This colorful, energetic style of writing became known as graffiti. Graffiti art showed that young people wanted to rebel against society. They didn't want to accept rules and travelled around cities to create paintings that every one could see. In many cases they had trouble with the police and the local government.
One well-known New York Street artist is Swoon. She cuts out paper images of people and puts them on walls and or sets them up on sidewalks. Swoon didn't start her career as a street artist. She studied art but, as time went on, got bored with the work she saw in museums and galleries. The people in New York enjoy Swoon's strong and imaginative style. Some museums have already bought some of her work.