A GRAFFITI artist has condemned a spate of “disrespectful” tagging.

Residents complained after more than 30 tags – personalised graffiti signatures – appeared in Brighton over the weekend in Craven Vale, Queen’s Park, St Luke’s and Hanover.

One, which read “TOYZ BFG”, appeared on a sign welcoming people to Craven Vale, while others were sprayed on to the side of houses and shop windows.

Now a graffiti artist has spoken out against the practice. He did not want to be named, fearing his work would be targeted if he identified himself.

He said: “If they know who I am they’ll ruin my stuff. But I’m not a fan of tagging.

“I do know why they do it though. It’s nothing to do with art. It’s about getting your name up there.

“P***ing off Joe Public is part of it. They think it’s anti-establishment. I don’t consider my own stuff that way. I just like to paint walls. But the tagging scene is completely different.

“They’re out on top of old buildings, like they were on the scaffold around St Peter’s Church. The guy was climbing up at 4am, leaving his heart-shaped tag which became kind of infamous, probably after a few cold drinks.

“I’m really against doing stuff on historic buildings – it’s a case of respect. I don’t do any illegals. But among the tagging fraternity there’s real kudos about getting it in inaccessible places.

“I know people who’ve done trains and ended up in prison for a few years. That’s when there’s a real campaign against them and it builds up.

“A tag is couple of seconds’ work. Mine take four to five hours minimum, and people love them.

“We’re at opposite ends of the spectrum.”

Queensway resident Kevin Gunn complained earlier this week about what he called a “concerning spree” of tags.

He said: “It’s a continuing theme in Brighton, but this was a serious spate: it’s so prolific and has vandalised areas that aren’t normally tagged.

“I believe it took place on Friday night or Saturday morning. There must be about 30 to 40 different tags.

“It’s just gratuitous. Up to now we’ve been fortunate, but this is so disrespectful. There’s good art in this city but this tagging makes the place look looks shabby and dirty.

Window cleaner Ross Pettigrew said he had noticed even more brazen tagging in recent weeks.

He said: “I’ve had to wipe tags from shop windows in the North Laine. That’s not something I normally have to do. It’s got to a whole new level.”