Thanks to Endless Canvas for turning us on to this story.
It seems that police pressure in Portland has resulted in The Railyard gallery being evicted from their location. The Railyard opened earlier this summer with an installation-based show where dozens of artists (including Swampy, Feral Child and Gats) painted on the walls of the space. Portland police claim that the gallery is responsible, through that show, for bringing artists to Portland who then painted street art and graffiti illegally while they were in town. On the one hand, this whole thing is ridiculous: The Railyard is not responsible for what artists do in their spare time, and the work that The Railyard is responsible for was painted legally (and looks pretty good too). On the other hand, I’m surprised that more police around the world don’t try this tactic. Probably because a. it’s a difficult case to prove and b. it makes the police look like uncultured jerks. Shutting down art galleries isn’t exactly a popular move. Although in this case, it sounds like the police just used intimidation rather than actually pressing charges, so there’s really nothing that would have to be proven in court.
Best of luck to The Railyard. Hopefully they can move to a new space where the police will leave them alone.
Photo by Nuclear Winter
Via Endless Canvas