Bathroom Graffiti:World's greatest artists  

Posted by Praveen in ,

This is a literal translation of the post in my malaylam blog

If you ask me who's the world's greatest artist, I would never say the names of Picasso, Ravi Varma or Michaelangelo. Because all of them might have spent months or even years to create their masterpieces. They spent a better part of their lifetimes using high quality canvas and paints in pursuit of this art. There are some other type of artists who create masterpieces on any surface with any object they can get hold of, that too in a very short span of time. Most of the artists of this kind lets their imagination fly only in the confines of public toilets or inside the 'cleanly' toilets in trains. Just as We call those who sing only in the bathroom as bathroom singers, we can call these elite group 'bathroom artists'. Most of us think only of somehow getting outside fast when we enter the horrible public toilets. We must salute these guys who think and draw up amazing lines and jaw dropping artwork inside this place. Now, wherever I go, one of my hobbies is to read and observe all the graffiti in the public toilets. Afterall, you gotta have something to make yourself happy when you are doing something so boring.

The number of people who use the maximum of 5 minutes that we get in a public toilet to create world class art work is increasing day by day. If you have any doubts, just get into one of those filthy looking toilets. Both in trains and public places, the bathroom walls are now so artistically decorated that there's a shortage of space for new artists. Drawings which rival M.F.Hussein's in perversion to female drawings matching Ravi Varma's in artistic brilliance can be seen here nowadays. There are some who get philosophical on seeing the toilet. They scribble an one line poem or a world shattering truth on the walls before leaving. Recently, I saw something written in the opposite wall while I was busy using the closet- "India's future is now in your hands." On seeing thiss, I suddenly raised both my hands as if someone was pointing a gun at me. Guess the sudden thought on India's future made me do this.

There are some big time fools too among these artists. These are those who scribble mushy romantic lines for their sweet hearts. Some examples-
"Oh my dear Thankam"
"I love you kamalaakashi"
"You are my fire, but here am smelling bad air"

And the guy who wrote his and his lover's name inside a heart symbol takes the cake for ultimate stupidity. I donnow whether these romantic fools had any notion of their sweethearts getting into a gents bathroom to read all these lines. Also, only God knows which 'kamalakshi' is going to read it all.

In this 4x4 cube called the toilet, we can also see exchange of dialogues between strangers. There are some who scribble replies to some lines written by others. And yet another will give a reply to both of them. Recently I saw something like this in a public toilet in Alappuzha. Someone had written almost a long winded essay in malayalam on life's unpredictability and the vastness of the world. Just below that someone has scribbled- "Stop the gibberish, do your task and get out idiot"[translated from the original line in malayalam]. Someone else had written in english-"When you have the gun, shoot, don't speak", obviously a brilliant inspiration from the famous line in 'The Good, the bad and the ugly". There are some others who find out the mistakes in such lines, correct it and award marks and grades. People don't even spare toilet ceilings- "Stop sitting there and staring at the sky. You better start shitting and get out", is a line I saw in a train toilet. I wanted to tell this guy that I was just pointing my nose upwards to escape from the unbearable smell that is common in our public toilets.

I've seen some writings in hindi too. This one's my favourite- 'Philip ke dick'.[People who know the author Philip.K.Dick and have a basic knowledge in Hindi and english will understand the brilliance and wittiness of this simple line].

Toilet is the only place where man shows his real face outside. Its where he becomes himself. (Adding, 'she becomes herself' also to avoid the feminist wrath). And its the only place where the creativity that is sleeping inside him is out in full flow. People who are scared of proving themselves in front of the whole world become 'creative' inside the toilets, sometimes even forgetting themselves. When I conducted more studies on this, I also stumbled upon a site called 'Bathroom graffiti'. Its a collective effort to collect all the bathroom graffiti around the world. So lets keep our eyes glued to the public toilets[pun intended], where some of the dead artists resurrected themselves. Maybe, the next Ravi Varma might be born in one of these toilets. I love the art of these unknown artists than the craps worth crores of rupees churned out by the pervert M.F.Hussein.

Checkout the malayalam version here
your crusader Praveen

This entry was posted on Sunday, September 06, 2009 at Sunday, September 06, 2009 and is filed under , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


dunno from where u get ideas for such brilliant topics! guess u validate the point that creativity comes most from the bathrooms!! :D

i loved both english and malayalam versions...
but the dialogue samayam kalayathe veetil poda was funnier in malayalam. and ROFL @ stupid lovers' messages!!

7:18 AM

I've actually wondered how people could fathom displaying their artistic creativity in toilets, of all places! :(

9:06 AM

Do write in your malayalam blog more often

10:41 PM

yeah, I agree with you...Graffiti is the best kind of pop art...

I remember in Delhi in the early 90s (or was it late 80s?), somebody had written "Jesus is coming" all over the place...Some other prankster had added "to become Hindu" to the sentence...It was really funny...

6:45 AM

lol....!! wonder where u come up with these :D....don answer tat ofcourse :D

1:44 AM

u find life in the most lifeless of places...:)

12:23 PM

I wonder about the plight of your bathroom ;)

11:49 PM

Interesting project this one. :-) Thanks for the link.

5:59 PM



From Argentina.

7:17 PM

Now, this is world that I didn't care to explore. Now, I should!

10:19 PM

Glad to find someone who rates MF Hussein, the same as me. Cheers for an entertaining post.

10:29 PM

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