Questionable Content

Should Artists Paint Murals for Free?

Welcome to Jackalope Ranch's Questionable Content, where local creatives and experts sound off on topics posed by New Times staff blogger Claire Lawton and the community. Have a question you'd like to ask? E-mail [email protected]

See also: Mural City See also: Tag, You're Art: Local Street Artists Are Tagging Over Murals and Calling It Art

This town has a lot of thank you notes to send out to the artists who make its buildings a little more colorful -- especially if they're doing it pro bono. Artists have painted walls since they've had paint and a tool with which to apply it to a wall, and the history of being paid to paint a mural on the side of a building dates back to the beginning of advertising.

So when it comes to local businesses asking artists to cover their walls with their signature characters, landscapes and typography, is it hurting their own value to paint for free?