Legacy Paint answers messages of hate with love
The Legacy Store Berlin, a shop for graffiti culture and art tools, thinks of graffiti as a language to spread joy. However, there’s one common graffiti symbol that is about spreading hate: the Hakenkreuz (also known as the Swastika). Rather than simply remove the symbol, Legacy Paints and Heimat/TBWA opted to use it as a medium to send back a different message. In the spring 2016, we encouraged artists to use paint to turn these messages of hate into messages of joy; To fight back, #Paintback.
The idea caught on and went viral immediately, as everyday people were inspired by the artists' work around town. Word of the #PaintBack campaign spread from Berlin over the whole world, from Le Figaro to The New York Times, from social media to TV.
But most importantly, places once clouded by hate and fear were turned back into places of joy. And the movement hasn’t stopped.