Graffiti Research Lab (GRL) is the brainchild of graffiti artists Q-Branch and Fi5e. Founded in February of 2006, GRL’s mission is to develop and share cutting-edge, experimental graffiti technology with fellow artists the world over. Funded by the Eyebeam OpenLab, which bills itself as a home for those working on the development of open source technology, GRL agents are passionate about reclaiming public spaces from “commercial and corporate culture.” The Lab’s website features videos of the group’s army of artists doing just that, along with instructions on how you can do some creative tagging of your own.
Graffiti Research Lab is a powerhouse of creativity. This crew has dreamed up new ways of tagging that will make any artist’s head spin. And if the videos documenting their escapades don’t floor you, the technology behind them will. GRL posts the recipes for each of their genius inventions; learn how to make your own LED Throwies or Electro-Graf by following the links provided to GRL’s step-by-step instructions on Instructables. Obviously, these projects have a clear political slant, but GRL seems less interested in editorializing their art than in sharing it and letting the projects speak for themselves. Most of the graffiti is done on the street, with the notable exception of the clever Mission Accomplished. The videos are generally shot with a single handheld camera, — understandable given the nature of these projects. But the soundtracks rock, the pictures are clear (even when shooting in the dark), and the edits are clean, quick, and cut straight to the point. G.R.L. Goes West is a great example of all these elements coming together as a small crew conducts some “field test” in LA and San Francisco. Also check out the GRL Flickr Group for some wicked nighttime graffiti shots.