top of page


Creativity is a crucial feature of urban success. However, few planners have ever advocated the true measures required to foster creativity as laid down by Richard Sennett: abolition of policing, schooling and zoning. Lip-service to the "creative city" is paid without wanting to encourage anywhere near the disorder that true creativity entails. Various types of creativity within the city are not officially recognised because they involve protest, subversion or social agitation. Yet these are often the very types of creativity that make a city attractive.

Unfortunately, the word ‘creativity’ so conveniently arouses feelings of wonder that it gets bandied about in relation to all kinds of urban activities calling for approval where, strictly speaking, true creation is not at issue (Blamires, 2000).

The reactive nihilism of graffiti artist BANKSY is a truly creative force that prompts us to question the ‘higher values’ of an all-pervading neo-liberal hegemony. His work broadens the public realm, transposes it to unlikely locales, catalyses productive discourse amongst those normally prevented from decision-making and encourages their questioning of, and participation in, urbanity. His broad appeal reflects a large swathe of society’s feelings about city processes. Anticipation of “the possible consequences of these feelings can help us to resolve the structural issues causing them” (Long, 2014).



Blamires, H., 2000. The Penguin Guide to Plain English, Penguin Books, London, pp23-24.

​Long, D., 2014. Listen to the Story: Banksy, Tyler the Creator and the Growing Nihilistic Mindset, Journal of Hip Hop Studies, Vol.1, Issue 1, Spring 2014, p82.

bottom of page