ICYMI: Alison Young has published Street Art World (Reaktion Books, dist. University of Chicago Press, 2016). Here from the publisher/distributor's website is a description of the book's contents.
Street art and graffiti are a familiar sight in all our cities. Giant murals commemorate historical events or proclaim the culture of a neighborhood, while tagged walls can function simultaneously as a claim to territory and a backdrop for an urban fashion shoot. Street Art World examines these divergent forms and functions of street art. This strikingly illustrated book explores every aspect of street art, from those who spray it into being to those who revel in it on Instagram, from its place under highway overpasses to one on the austere walls of high art museums. What exactly is street art? Is it the same as graffiti, or do they have different histories, meanings, and practitioners? Who makes it? Who buys it? Can it be exhibited at all, or does it always have to appear unsanctioned? Talking with artists, collectors, sellers, and buyers, author Alison Young reveals an energetic world of self-made artists who are simultaneously passionate about an authentic form of expression and ambivalent about the prospects of selling it to make a living—even a fabulously good one. Drawing on over twenty years of research, she juxtaposes the rise and fall of art markets against the vibrancy of the street and urban life, providing a rich history and new ways of contextualizing the words and images—some breathtakingly beautiful—that seem to appear overnight in cities around the world.