Street art can do more than just beautify a neighborhood. It can also tell residents about themselves and the place they live.
Street art can do more than just beautify a neighborhood. It can also tell residents about themselves and the place they live. That's what Tim Devin's unique projects do.
Since March, Devin, an artist based in the Boston neighborhood of Somerville, has been making small posters and taping them up on phone poles and other public fixtures. These "BBC Broadsides" come in three varieties (or "flavors," to use his term). The "Mappy Facts" broadsides show people demographic data about Boston, like average income levels by neighborhood, on colorful maps. The "Street Surveys" broadsides are more participatory, asking passersby questions about their relationship to their neighborhood, with tear-away tabs for them to answer with. A third flavor features poetry.
The surveys aren't scientific, of course, but it's possible that people who encounter Devin's art will come away with a better understanding of their city, or be prompted to think about their own relationship to the place they live.
You can download and print the survey posters and put them up in your own city if you're curious about how your neighbors percieve their home.