Portland’s East End Graffiti Wall Could Be Going Away
A space for free expression, or a home for offensive images?
According to WCSH, that's what the board of trustees of the Portland Water System will be deciding tonight, with input from the public. The wall, located on the premises of the Portland Water District on the Eastern Promenade, has been a space for artists to express themselves over the last 15 years. However, city officials have taken note of some offensive imagery that has made it's way onto the wall in recent memory - for example, an image of Governor Paul LePage dressed as a member of the KKK.
The board will be holding an open meeting tonight (1/25/2017) at the Portland Water District at 7:00pm. While public opinion will be taken into account, the Portland Water District has said that it will not be the deciding factor.
While the appropriateness of offensive images is rightly being called into question, spots like this wall are important to have in a hub of creativity like Portland. It gathers local artists in one place, and lets their voices be heard through their medium of choice. With Federal funding for the arts looking like its on its way out, Portland will need to find other ways, including spaces like this wall, to bring its artistic community together.