Former grafiti site near the Milk Market 2

Accidental Art

Something that has caught my attention for the last couple of months while walking around Limerick are all the patches of coloured paint that have been used to cover graffiti. These graffiti cover-ups are, in some cases, vaguely matched to the underlying colour of wall and in some cases not at all. A light green will be used on a dark green gate but red or brown will be used on a grey concrete wall. How do they choose? Where does the paint come from? Is it the work of the local council? Or a guerrilla operative acting on some sort of vigilante impulse?


I have begun photographing them and collecting these images together on my (newly created) Instagram account [ username: walsh.isabella]. I see them as a sort of accidental art, I am sure the person who does it sees themselves as doing their civic duty and not as an artist. I find it amusing that the cover-ups are also a form of graffiti, they make a statement and command attention albeit in a different way to that which it covers. If they are the actions of a vigilante then the person doing this is as criminal as those whose work they are trying to hide….


They often make interesting abstract patterns on the buildings that they decorate. In some cases they seem like pieces of text which have been officially redacted. In each of the photographs I have tried to keep the composition simple and to include the context of the building that the graffiti is decorating.  People familiar with Limerick City will recognize many of the locations, however for the most part I have tried to keep the location a little vague (unless some location information is an intrinsic part of the scene such as a street sign) I also try to avoid things like car registration plates, although it is not always possible. Having been in possession of a smartphone for only a couple of months this ability to make photographs at any time in any place is still somewhat of a novelty to me.