Spring 2014

Art and Art History Event Calendar


Life Model Sessions

Every Tuesday Starting February 4

8:30-10:00 PM, Montgomery Hall

Visiting Artist Talk: Kathleen Hall

February 26th, 4:45 PM, Library 321

Alumni Spotlight: Sarah Sachs 


Sarah received her BA in Studio Art from St. Mary's College of Maryland in 2006. In 2008, she received her Masters of Art in Digital Art from Maryland Institute College of Art, and in 2009 she received her Masters of Fine Art in Photography and Digital Imaging, also from Maryland Institute College of Art. Through her fine art work, Sarah explores the dichotomy between human and digital memory, how the two influence one another, and how they are affected by natural and technological elements of decay. She hopes to create a dialogue about the relationships between personal memory, society’s collective memory, and collective cultural identity. 

Sarah Sachs Photography


Mariel Berry, Art History SMP, 2005                Return to SMP Archive Index 
Mentor: Dr. Joseph Lucchesi

Graffiti: Inscribing Urban Expression on New York and Los Angeles

Graffiti on a wall in Los Angeles

Abstract:  This project examines community-based graffiti from New York City and Los Angeles, in order to illustrate the use of graffiti as a form of urban expression and as a means of communication. Assessments of graffiti in each city, demonstrate the implementation of graffiti by urban youth subcultures. Graffiti emerged in New York during the hip-hop phenomenon of the 1970s. It provided a way in which urban youth from marginalized groups could make their voices heard and presence known. In Los Angeles, graffiti developed in the urban youth gang culture. While graffiti writers in New York intended to spread their names throughout the city using public subway trains as their backdrop, gang writers in L.A. utilized graffiti as a way to mark gang territory. Aesthetically, the styles, techniques and forms of writing in each city vary greatly. In New York, writers focused intently on cultivating an innovative and “eye catching” style to generate fame and notoriety around the city and among their peers. L.A. gang writing, in comparison to New York graffiti, appears less stylized and elaborate because the intent for writing is much different. Gang writers use graffiti as a mark of territory in their gang neighborhood for members and enemy gangs to see. It acts as a symbol of gang presence in a particular area. Addressing the aesthetic differences between New York and Los Angeles graffiti are not meant to prove one style more artistic than the other. Instead graffiti should be looked at in full context—Who are the writers and what do they represent?