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Saturday, June 28, 2008

Beer, Art, and Graffiti

I know that many of you Knights out there are artists or work in the advertising field (or both).

This short story involves both.

I didn't know this, but Philadelphia is known for colorful murals of famous people and places.

Beer advertisers, of course, don't miss a beat.

It seems that Pabst Brewing Co., which produces Colt 45, has placed graffiti-styled ads for their beers around Philadelphia. The ads show comic book-style characters clutching bottles and cans of Colt 45. "Works every time," reads the slogan. The ad's gray-and-white adult cartoon characters are shown holding golden cans and bottles of the malt liquor. In the corner, the small print reads, "Yo, enjoy our frosty malt beverages responsibly!"

According to an AP article: “A nonprofit anti-billboard group, the Society Created to Reduce Urban Blight, has complained to city regulators, saying the ads should be removed because they are in areas not zoned for advertising.” And, “ Mary Tracy, executive director of the group, said they are particularly offensive in a city known for murals of famous places and people, from Frank Sinatra to Malcolm X.”

A cyclist passes an advertisement for Colt 45 malt liquor on Girard Avenue in Philadelphia, Wednesday, June 25, 2008. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

Bottom line. A lot of people have taken offense to the “artful ads” and are demanding them taken down. What do you think? Effective advertising? Urban blight? Art?

Something to think about.

Sir Bowie of Greenbriar


  1. Had to think about this one...but had to come down on the side of rules. I love art and the ability to decorate and draw Murals, but just as there are people who love them we have to co-exist with people who don't love them.

    The world especially the urban world is not a blank canvas for Graffitti Art. Everything out there is own by somebody. I love visiting the areas that murals are allowed in ( we Have the Cowley Road in Oxford ) but i can't say i'd be any too pleased if the side of my apartment block was sprayed with an ad for beer, no matter how clever and how much i like the beer. Just as i wouldn't have a Newcastle Brown tattoo done on my body, So, Adverts where they are legal allowed, murals where locally agreed, and drink responsibly.

    Sir Dayvd

  2. I agree with Sir Dayvd. There is a place for everything, the side of my house would not be one of them. Of course, being in the business, I could change my mind if the commissions where big enough! Does that make me a whore?! I prefer Viking Ad Man from Hell!