A conference on graffiti as historical sources is taking place between 20 and 22 April 2017 at the Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich in Germany. The conference discusses these unofficial inscriptions, methods and techniques of study as well as preservation methods.
A graffito functions as a person’s makeshift signature in a public space, carved or painted by themselves in order to commemorate their presence on the spot. The picture shows the English poet’s Byron signature, which he carved himself at a column in the Poseidon temple in Sounion, Greece. Byron visited Sounion at the beginning of the 19th cent. AD. It is more than probable that Byron would be seen nowadays as a vandal; this only shows our changing cultural attitudes towards graffiti. There are many fascinating aspects of graffiti to be studied and highlighted, which I am certain the Munich conference will address.