DRUGS: detail from the dressing floor. Botallack, West Penwith, Cornwall

Botallack


On Botallack cliff overlooking the famous and iconic Crowns engine houses there exists amongst the recently consolidated calciners and associated mine buildings, a collection of graffiti from the 1980’s spray painted onto 2 partly rough cast concrete walls that enclose the Crown’s dressing floor. This graffiti is sprayed from the same can of paint [a cream or English Rose colour?] and appears in 4 separate parts. I first saw them about 13 years ago. The subject matter to which it refers relates to the 1980’s and so a probable age for the group would be around 25 years old. A number of the texts are hardly discernible now. Reading from the left to the right the first slogan in the group reads –‘SEX+DRUGS+MAGGIE THATCHER’ [SDMT]. The contentious nature of the graffiti and its humour made them stand out from the conventional ‘I woz ere’. It was a very evocative if not provocative [and funny] statement that for many could sum up this period. The conceptual and visual focus of the project is centred on the remains of this graffiti.

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Text from the exhibition

Text from the exhibition

Self guided trail

Self guided trail

Contemporary response

Contemporary response
Prediction - digitally imagined graffiti

Record

Record
Digitally remade graffiti

S+D+MT

S+D+MT
Digitally remade graffiti