An Encyclopedia of Houston Street Art
An Encyclopedia of Houston Street Art

Tags

Where it all began.  From gang signs to New York City subway vandals in the 1970s.  They serve as an artist's signature, if nothing more.

Throwies

Tags evolved into "throwies" (or"throw-ups") and "fill-ins," which incorporate 2 or 3 colors.

Rollers & Blockbusters

Large blocky tags are often done with a roller, hence the name.

Wildstyles

The most elaborate form of graffiti writing is known as wildstyle, sometimes called "burners" or "pieces."

Pieces

Short for "masterpiece," a piece can be a wildstyle, but is usually an elaborate work or mural.

Characters

Some artists develop and stick to a signature character.  One of the most notable in the Houston area is Ack! (pictured).

Stencils

A lot of street artists look down on the use of stencils, but the most famous street artist in the world--Banksy--is primarily a stencil artist.

Wheatpaste

Houston has a fairly substantial wheatpaste scene, with Eyesore, Zenfull, and Give Up leading the way.  (B-day cake by Hanksy, a non-Houstonian, when he was in town.)

Slaps/Stickers

Whether hand-drawn or production, stickers can be a vehicle for self-promotion, or a form of graffiti in itself.  UPS labels are an ingrained part of street art culture.  (Hint: they're free!)

Other

Finally, street art can take many forms, such as yarn bombing, tiling, and installations.

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