The street art decade: 2000-2010

Video-lecture + Q&A session + extras
Teacher: Javier Abarca

The street art decade: 2000-2010 - Urbanario School

By the start of the 21st century, the internet resurrected street art, now as a closely connected global scene. This lecture examines the keys to understanding street art in its blossoming years.

Its techniques, its ethics, its shifting tastes and audiences, and its conflictive relation with graffiti. Also its strategies, from quasi-advertising campaigns to site-specific interventions, from inconspicuous pieces to large works painted with pole and roller.

With this purchase you get permanent streaming access to the video-lecture, plus extras.


Our video-lectures are designed and taught by Javier Abarca, one of the leading thinkers in the field, with over 15 years of experience teaching about street art internationally at university level.


Q&A session

By purchasing permanent access to this video-lecture you get access to one group Q&A session with the teacher, live on Zoom.

Bring your questions and comments from watching the video-lecture, or about street art in general.

Recorded talk with guest artist

You can choose access to one of our two recorded talks with guest artists, MOMO (US) and Eltono (FR). The talks took place in the summer of 2021.

The teacher has worked thoroughly with both artists and knows their work in detail. The talks are therefore unique and touch upon many underexplored aspects of the work of these two unmissable artists.

Annotated bibliography and videography

Listings of the most relevant texts and films about the topics covered in this lecture.

Our lists are meant to be actually useful – they are concise, and every item is commented by the teacher in order to put it in context and explain its relevance.

Telegram chat

A space for sharing information about graffiti and street art. You can also post questions and comments about the video-lecture.

Permanent access

You get permanent access to the video-lecture, the talk with guest artist, the bibliography and the videography. The recording of the Q&A session is available for download.


You can request a certificate of attendance for CV purposes.

By purchasing access to this video-lecture you get the following:

Fee: 40€

VAT for Europeans not included

Available soon, book here:

Get a 25% discount from the standard fee by purchasing access to our full program of five lectures


Altogether 10 hours of streamable video content

Extra content:

How the school works

Streamable anytime
Permanent access

Watch the lecture at your own pace, and explore the accompanying bibliography and videography.

Note down your questions and comments for discussion with the teacher during your Q&A session.

You can also post questions and comments about the lecture on our Telegram chat.

Group Q&A session with the teacher
Live on Zoom
Downloadable recording

You can book one of our weekly group Q&A sessions with the teacher.

The teacher is available for Q&A every Saturday 11:30am–12:30pm and 6:30–7:30pm (Madrid time).

You can choose the slot you prefer for your Q&A session within a month after you purchase access to the lecture.

Recorded talk with guest artist
Streamable anytime
Permanent access

You can choose access to one of our two recorded talks with guest artists, MOMO (US) and Eltono (FR).

Bibliography and videography

This lecture’s accompanying bibliography and videography are available in web format.

Permanent access​

You get permanent streaming access to the video-lecture and the talk with guest artist.

Access to the bibliography and the videography is permanent as well.

The recording of the Q&A session is available for download for at least a week.


All content is taught in English.


You can request a certificate of attendance for CV purposes.


Javier Abarca

Javier Abarca (Madrid 1973) is one of the leading thinkers in the field of graffiti and street art. A key artist in the first generation of Spanish graffiti, he taught a pioneering 4-month course on these topics at the Complutense University of Madrid between 2006 and 2015. He works internationally as an educator, researcher and author.

After teaching widely for 15 years, Abarca founded the Urbanario School, an online academy for advanced education about graffiti, street art and related topics. Since 2008 he has run the website Urbanario, the essential source for graffiti and street art research in Spanish language. He is also the founder and director of the groundbreaking events Unlock Book Fair and Tag Conference.

Why study at the Urbanario School

A unique opportunity

The Urbanario School offers an unprecedented opportunity to access advanced education in the fields of graffiti and street art. It provides students, academics, and professionals with suitable intellectual foundations for working in projects related to these fields.

Both in-depth and accessible

Our video-lectures are immersive and entertaining and lay out complex issues in simple terms, providing an accessible window to this often obscure field. They allow both specialists and newcomers to delve into an in-depth study of the intricacies of graffiti, street art and overlapping practices as they interrelate with society.

Javier Abarca’s lectures are the product of a whole life of research, networking and reflection, and have been worked on and improved for over 15 years. He has shared them with hundreds of students of every background, both in academic and independent settings.

Learn with a leading thinker

The school is also a showcase for the influential ideas developed by Javier Abarca in his texts and lectures. Abarca is known for his uniquely revealing critical approaches, as well as for his privileged access to obscure topics. The live Q&A sessions present opportunity for questions, reflection and debate with one of the leading thinkers in the field.

Access our video-archive of guest artists

Our talks with guests provide students with unique views inside the processes and motivations of some of the most forward-thinking and reflective actors in the graffiti and street art scene.

Enjoy our flexible methodology

Video-lectures are freely streamable, and you get permanent access to them. The teacher is available for Q&A sessions every Saturday at two different hours.

Talk with fellow street art enthusiasts

Students at the Urbanario School come from different countries and backgrounds, and our group Q&A sessions bring about interesting conversations. Our Telegram chat lends additional space for sharing news and opinions about graffiti and street art.

Quotes about the teacher

Rafael Schacter (UK)Professor, critic and curator | University College London
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Javier Abarca is an inspirational thinker, theorist, and teacher. He understands graffiti from the position both of a practitioner embedded in the subculture, and of an educator able to translate this visual and cultural world into the space of the classroom and the street. Javier’s teaching and mentoring will benefit all those who he comes into contact with; artists, students, and art professionals alike.
Pedro Soares (PT)Professor | Founder and director, Lisbon Street Art and Urban Creativity Conference | Universidade de Lisboa
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With an intense and thought-provoking character, Javier Abarca is guarantee of the sharpest and more unconstrained thoughts about graffiti. This free-thinker is simultaneously a pioneer of the most underground side of graffiti and the author of the first Spanish-language PhD-level thesis about graffiti and street art
Pietro Rivasi (IT)Critic and curator | Creator of Icone Festival, founded in 2002
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Javier Abarca is the kind of researcher graffiti culture needs: he has a strong background in the scene, curiosity and an extraordinary storytelling capacity. An impressive, top-level divulgator.
Carlo McCormick (US)Author, critic and curator
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With his head in the rigors of academia and his feet on the streets, Javier Abarca is one of the most compelling and erudite guides to urban aesthetic and practice out there. His intelligence and remarkable understanding are secondary only to the exceptional generosity by which he shares his great learning with others.
Robert Kaltenhäuser (DE)Critic and curator | Museum für Visuelle Dissidenz
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In addition to his virtually unparalleled achievements for independent research and networking in the field of Urban Art, Javier Abarca has been one of the standout forward thinking curators and critics in and on the genre ever since he raised his substantive voice.
Lachlan Macdowall (AU)Professor and author | University of Melbourne | Director, MIECAT Institute | Author of «Instafame, Graffiti and Street Art in the Instagram Era»
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Javier Abarca is one the foremost scholars of graffiti, street art and urban creativity. As a practitioner, theorist, author, publisher and adventurer, Javier brings decades of experience, an encyclopaedic knowledge of urban creativity in all its forms and a restless curiosity to his craft.
Richard Brook (UK)Professor and author | Manchester School of Architecture, Art and Design
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Javier Abarca is one of the world's leading thinkers on graffiti and art in the urban environment. He has tirelessly promoted critical approaches that help to understand the value and values of ephemeral art movements of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. His work is crucial in discourses around public space, spatial justice and rights to the city.
David Demougeot (FR)Director, Bien Urbain festival
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For many years Javier Abarca has studied independent public art as a complex subject, dealing with topics such as art history, societal changes, underground cultures and media dissemination. Avoiding clichés and snobbery, he manages to deliver his precise and relevant thoughts in a fluent and reachable way, naming the issues as no one else.
Dumar NovYork (US)Author of «What do One Million JA Tags Signify?»
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Javier Abarca has proven himself to be a leading expert in the field of Graffiti Studies as well as a detail-oriented producer of graffiti related events. His Unlock Book Fair is a pioneering happening which always brings fascinating perspectives and avant-garde approaches to interpreting the writing on the wall.
Andrea Caputo (IT)Publisher and architect | Editor of «All City Writers»
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Javier Abarca has not just witnessed the Graffiti Writing movement as one of the pioneers of the Spanish and Madrilenian scenes. Through the past decades, he has built a long-time investigation on the development of Graffiti Writing style, techniques and behaviors though countless international contributions.
Ulrich Blanché (DE)Professor and author | University of Heildelberg | Author of «Banksy, Urban Art in a Material World»
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Javier Abarca is one of the most important graffiti and street art researchers worldwide. His groundbreaking texts on topics such as the punk side of graffiti, Brazil stencil pioneer Alex Vallauri, or the significance of the human scale in illegal street art, have been especially important for my own research.
Peter Bengtsen (DK)Lund University | Author of «The Street Art World»
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As the person behind the Unlock Book Fair and the Tag Conference, Javier Abarca is a central figure in the community of researchers focused on graffiti and street art. He has a long history of thinking and writing about these topics and, crucially, emphasizes the importance of paying attention to not just centrally-placed and flashy graffiti pieces and large-scale murals, but also to out-of-the-way and less conspicuous interventions.
Ilaria Hoppe (DE)Professor | Institute of Contemporary Arts and Media, Katholische Privat-Universität Linz
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Javier Abarca is one of the most interesting graffiti researchers worldwide. On the one hand, his extensive knowledge comes directly from the street, as he is one of the pioneers of the writing scene in Spain; on the other hand, he looks back on many years of research and teaching within academia. He also initiated the Tag Conference and the Unlock Book Fair, which have become important events of critical graffiti research at the interface between subculture and scholarship.
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