About Us

Urban art/graffiti application

The platform is an output of the GCRO’s (Gauteng City-Region Observatory) Graffiti in the City research project and a partnership between the GCRO and OCL (Open Cities Lab). The project stems from the idea that urban art and graffiti, whether legal or illegal, is an important historical marker of culture, politics, and society but is often lost or washed away without being captured, documented and archived. We’re particularly interested in understanding how graffiti might be different in different neighbourhoods or cities and what urban policies can do to support graffiti culture while retaining the vibrancy and spontaneity of the art form. An important part of the project will also archive graffiti in sites so that we can understand how graffiti changes over time and how graffiti changes urban spaces and the environment.

The aim of the platform is to create a collaborative space for sharing photographs of graffiti and street art. Initially, this platform application will be populated with existing archive material of urban art in certain areas with the aim of creating a record and tool for use by residents of and visitors to the city-region.

Data Collection Policy

We collect GPS coordinates to help users map their photos. If you don’t want your location data to be collected please switch “Location Services” off in your phone settings before you take photos. No data is shared with third parties.

Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO)

The Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO) was established in 2008 as a partnership between the University of Johannesburg (UJ), the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg (Wits), the Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG), and organised local government in Gauteng.

The GCRO helps to build the knowledge base that government, business, labour, civil society and residents all need to make the Gauteng City-Region competitive, spatially integrated, environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive.

The GCRO collects data and benchmarks the city-region, provides policy analysis and support, undertakes applied research, and publishes critically reflective academic work. Information regarding GCRO and its research is available on the GCRO website.

Open Cities Lab (OCL)

Open Cities Lab is a non-profit organisation, based in eThekwini municipality, concerned with the ways in which transparency, technology, community engagement and access to data can create more inclusive and cohesive cities, with Durban as their main testbed for interventions and projects.

GCRO Project Team

Alexandra Parker, Samkelisiwe Khanyile

Designed & Developed by Open Cities Lab

Sophie McManus, Paul Figueira, Matthew Adendorff, Richard Gevers, Wasim Moosa and Black Box

Artist Involvement

We would like to give special thanks to graffiti artists in Durban and Johannesburg who made time to attend workshops as well as user testing sessions. 

For project related questions:

Gauteng City-Region Observatory (GCRO)

For app related bugs:

Open Cities Lab (OCL)