What is the difference between graffiti vandalism and urban art

There are often mixed messages in the media about graffiti and urban art but essentially the definition between both terms defines one as criminal damage (graffiti) and the other as permission based artwork (urban art).

The WA Police Force Graffiti Team defines graffiti vandalism as the defacing of private and public property without consent from the property owner. Graffiti vandalism can take the form of writing, drawing or scratching onto surfaces using different implements such as paint, markers, stickers, and stencilling. It is illegal under the Graffiti Vandalism Act 2016.

Urban Art, unlike graffiti vandalism, is legal artwork where permission to mark the surface has been granted by the owner of the property.   Urban Art is often known under many names such as street art or mural art. Urban Art projects on hotspot areas can be an effective graffiti prevention strategy and is recommended by the WA Police Force Graffiti Team.