if you have ever used your finger to scribble the words “wash me” on the back of a dirty vehicle, then you have participated in reverse, or clean graffiti. reverse graffiti first started gaining popularity in the early 2000s when british artist PAUL “MOOSE” CURTIS began using a sock to clean parts of tiles and turn them into works of art. as time progressed, the method of reverse graffiti has evolved, and MOOSE switched from a sock to a powerwasher. MOOSE has teamed up with a number of parties to create clean graffiti, such as the london government, advocacy groups like greenpeace and anti-gun campaigns, as well as advertising agencies. it’s hard to believe that clean graffiti is actually considered illegal as it sits in a murky gray area between creatively cleaning a space and vandalism. MOOSE has actually been arrested several times for his artwork. in 2006, MOOSE told the new york times that clean graffiti is “refacing, not defacing. just restoring a surface to its original state. it’s very temporary. it glows and it twinkles, and then it fades away.”
MOOSE is seen as the father of reverse graffiti, but it is now gaining popularity and more artists are making headlines for their “clean art.” most recently is a 300 ft by 177 ft mural, powerwashed into the walls of poland’s solina dam. after over 40 years of collecting dirt and grime on its walls, the polska grupa energetyczna company was ready to powerwash the dam, but not before asking the emerging comic book artist, TRUST, for some help. TRUST designed the giant eco-mural honoring the wild and plant life found in the bieszczady. just look at how awesome the murals turned out!