Fines on street art and inscriptions in Tbilisi to be increased
04 April, 2018
Fines on street art and inscriptions in Tbilisi to be increased
Street art is quite popular in Georgia, especially in its capital city of Tbilisi. There are a number of remarkable paintings by modern Georgian artists that adorn streets of Tbilisi.

Yet simultaneously one may also come many ugly scribbles and strange inscriptions on the buildings, which do not carry any meaning and do not fit into common aesthetic standards.
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Stencil by street artist Medic

Watch the video depicting works by Georgian street artists below

According to the new draft law
registered in Georgia’s parliament, fines for distorting the appearance of Tbilisi increase.
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Escape by Georgian street artist Gagosh. Photo courtesy Street Art in Georgia

According to the new draft law, one will be fined by GEL 200 for placing different types of inscriptions and paintings on the territory of Tbilisi, namely onto the facades, windows, fences, columns, trees, sidewalks, and walkways, as well as for sticking banners and posters to the unsuitable place.
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Artwork by Georgian street artist Dr.love

If this action is repeated, the fine will increase up to GEL 1000.



According to the currently existing law, which works not only in Tbilisi, but in all self-governing units, same act is fined by GEL 50, while if it is repeated, the fine increase up to GEL 500. There are different approaches and tendencies toward street art throughout the world. In some places the rules are skitter, while some countries are relatively tolerant. In Mumbai, India, charge range is from approximately $801USD to one year imprisonment. Australia’s capital Sydney prescribed almost $2000 USD or 300 hours of community service or one year in jail but only for graffiti that causes a significant amount of property damage. Graffiti artists in Barcelona are fined at a starting fee of €750 (approx. $799 USD), and each case is defined by the damages. Any damage done on monuments and protected buildings can result in higher penalties of €1,500-3,000 (approx. $1,598-3,195 USD). Fixed charge for foul in London was defined in 2005 on sum of £75 (approx. $111 USD) for all graffiti.
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Lamb by self-taught artist Mishiko Sulakauri

The new draft law does not provide increasing fines in other places in Georgia except Tbilisi.
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Murals by contemporary street artists at Fabrika, Hostel and Urban Hotspot in Tbilisi

According to the draft law, if one transfers various paintings, inscriptions and symbols on the facades of the administrative buildings, or in the surrounding areas, the fine amounts to GEL 1000. If the action is repeated, the fine will be GEL 2000, while if necessary, 15 days of imprisonment is also acceptable.
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Lamb by Mishiko Sulakauri

At this stage, the act of vandalism is fined by GEL 500, and if it is repeated, the fine is GEL 1000. The new law decreases the duration of imprisonment, which is now 30 days.

Spoiling the appearance of monuments with cultural heritage status will be fined GEL 1000, while if the action is repeated, the fine will be GEL 2000. This article of the draft law does not differ from the currently active legislation.
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Memento Mori by Georgian street artist Luka Jafaridze. Photo courtesy Street Art in Georgia

In each mentioned case, if the violation is not repaired within 10 days, the fine will be GEL 1000. The amount of the fine is twice less in currently existing legislation.

The draft law will be discussed in Parliament of Georgia on April 26. people behind the bill are the deputies of Georgian Dream, the governing party of Georgia: Zaza Gabunia, Mariam Jashi, Archil Talakvadze, Beka Odisharia and Alexander Kantaria.
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Artwork by street artist Musya Keburia at Fabrika Hostel, Tbilisi

Free Art, which is known as Street Art, first gained popularity in the United States.Over recent years it became very popular in Georgia as well. More and more creative Georgian street artists started emerging on the scene triumphing over ugly scribbles and the remains of 1990s. Originally this kind of art was prohibited by US law, so street artists started painting on demolished buildings. Later, they were called “Night Artists” because they were painting on the walls at night and disappearing in the daytime.
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By Georgian street artist Tamoonz

Street artists usually use colorful “spray paint” because it dries quickly and is difficult to remove from the walls. The same is happening in Georgia. Graffiti painters choose abandoned, dysfunctional buildings or their ruins underground, in order to create real masterpieces. The underground walkways serve as free galleries, where the artists cabn display their murals and transmit certain message to the viewers. . The main themes that Georgian street art murals convey are : environment, pollution, peace, love, freedom, etc. It is thought that this kind of art is for each citizen; this is art without any borders, created by people, who think that urban art is the best way to communicate with the society permanently.
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By Tamoonz

Street art in Georgia does not have very long history, but it is becoming more and more widespread. Georgia artists think it is the best method of self-expression. One of the most popular graffiti painters in Georgia are Dr. Love,Tamoonz, Lamb, Musya, Gagosh , etc. The artists have been part of many local and international street art festivals and their works make the city more colorful and attractive. It is not known yet what will happen to already existing paintings in the streets and were exactly the artists will be allowed to transfer their amazing pieces of art.

Related stories:

“Street art without criticism is simply painting” - Person behind LAMB

Street Art in Georgia - Underground walkways become awesome Galleries

TamOONZ - A New Georgian Contemporary Artist on the Scene

Street artist reflects Georgian reality in her illustrations

Stylish beer bottles with creative artworks by Georgian artists

Georgian artist Tamoonz featured in international street art festival in Nepal

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