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Symbol decrypted?

By 7. January 2022May 30th, 2022No Comments


Symbol decrypted?


Guest article by Maike Jänicke, Leipzig

Technical illustrations are supposed to convey content (messages). Graffiti should also convey messages (content). In a good technical illustration, the content can be understood by the addressee depending from the context. In graffiti it is rather difficult to get at the explicit or implicit message of the writer.

A current phenomenon is the graffiti of a yellow toilet paper roll, which stretches once across Leipzig.

  • A writer passing through?
  • Why a yellow toilet paper roll?
  • An iconic symbol?
  • A metaphorical symbol?
  • Still a statement or already a cry for help?

Google Maps map with interactive locations and linked images.

We know neither the background nor the message of the graffiti. But as in Technical Illustration, we start automatically with the processing of consciously viewed images. So what do we see? The color yellow, for glow, radiance, cheerfulness and optimism. Toilet paper, usually rather little respected, highly valued only in certain situations. Who now sharply combined, everything in a temporal context and believes to recognize a massage, I must disappoint. The graffiti are created before all 2020.

In the end, a graffito is art (street art) and you take it as it is. Technical illustrations are not art. Here should be understood and not interpreted. Graffiti, on the other hand, is art for some viewers, but for many simply vandalism. Even the process of creating a graffiti can be part of the message. This is certainly not the case with technical illustrations.

So we take it sporty and go together on the hunt for the graffiti of a yellow toilet paper roll. Have you found one, then I would be happy about a short mail with the picture and GPS data: