Writing on the Wall

It is thought that modern graffiti first appeared in America in Philadelphia in the early 1960's. By the next decade it had exploded onto the scene and, perhaps obviously, become synonymous with protest. Even that was only natural, considering that the first graffiti had come from the ancient Romans and Greeks who wrote protest poems on buildings

Tear gas makes a young girl from the Les Miserables musical weep on the walls of the French embassy in London.

Tear gas makes a young girl from the Les Miserables musical weep on the walls of the French embassy in London. The artworks criticises the use of the gas on the 'Jungle' migrant camp in Calais, France. (Getty)

A graffiti screams support for impeached Brazilian President Dilma Roussef in Rio de Janeiro.

A graffiti screams support for impeached Brazilian President Dilma Roussef in Rio de Janeiro. (Getty)

The German word 'nein', or no, is emblazoned over the European Union flag in Athens, Greece. The 'e' in the word nein has been turned into the euro sign.

The German word 'nein', or no, is emblazoned over the European Union flag in Athens, Greece. The 'e' in the word nein has been turned into the euro sign. (Getty)

Graffiti is sprayed on the remains of a building destroyed in rioting in Dellwood, Missouri.

Graffiti is sprayed on the remains of a building destroyed in rioting in Dellwood, Missouri. The rioting broke out after it emerged that the police officer who shot Michael Brown, an 18-year-old black teen, would not be charged with a crime. (Getty)

Works of contemporary art adorn the streets of Athens. Greece's economic collapse prompted a new wave of innovative graffiti, and made the city a Mecca for street artists.

Works of contemporary art adorn the streets of Athens. Greece's economic collapse prompted a new wave of innovative graffiti, and made the city a Mecca for street artists. (Getty)

Supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi continue their fight through street art.

Supporters of ousted Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi continue their fight through street art. (Getty)

Anti-government grafitti. Athens, Greece

Anti-government grafitti. Athens, Greece (Getty)

A man walks past graffiti on a building in Athens, Greece on December 6, 2011. The wall art expresses disillusionment over austerity measures even as Greece remained mired in a debt crisis.

A man walks past graffiti on a building in Athens, Greece on December 6, 2011. The wall art expresses disillusionment over austerity measures even as Greece remained mired in a debt crisis. (Getty)

Standing next to anti-government graffiti, a Tunisian man looks on as protesters demonstrate outside former Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi's office in Government Square in Tunis.

Standing next to anti-government graffiti, a Tunisian man looks on as protesters demonstrate outside former Prime Minister Mohammed Ghannouchi's office in Government Square in Tunis. (Getty)

The 'guerilla' artist Banksy's 'Sweeping It Under The Carpet' in Chalk Farm, London. The maid depicted here had cleaned the artist's room in a motel in Los Angeles.

The 'guerilla' artist Banksy's 'Sweeping It Under The Carpet' in Chalk Farm, London. The maid depicted here had cleaned the artist's room in a motel in Los Angeles. (Getty)

A Palestinian girl walks past pro-Iraq art in Gaza City. Palestinian artists had splashed colour on walls to show their support for Iraq during the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2001.

A Palestinian girl walks past pro-Iraq art in Gaza City. Palestinian artists had splashed colour on walls to show their support for Iraq during the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2001. (Getty)