Be The Light: The Art Of Turning Hate Into Great


I’ve joined in a yearlong monthly event called We Are The World Blogfest.  

The purpose of this event is to highlight positive news stories, presenting these stories on your blog on the last Friday of the month.

This being the last Friday of August, in a month that’s been like no other, I have a small news story, albeit political, to share with you, my gentle readers.


Early in August I saw this news story, Berlin street artist group cleverly undo swastika graffiti.

The artists featured in this news story have collaborated, voluntarily, to make their city “100% swastika-free” by responding “with humour and love” to the unwelcome swastika graffiti.  They are doing this by modifying the swastika graffiti, turning it into benign, rather cute, images.


Considering the recent violent neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, VA, this article is more timely than I expected it to be when I first read it and saved it for this project.

I liked the story because I thought these artists had found an inspired + simple way to handle hate.  By defacing that which was defaced, they have created something not morally reprehensible.

Something that shows a bit of style and, dare I suggest, angelic grace.

Something that quickly and quietly has effectively turned hate into great.

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Humorous. Adaptable. Charmingly cynical. Midwestern by chance. Kindhearted by choice. Fond of words.

40 thoughts on “Be The Light: The Art Of Turning Hate Into Great”

  1. Brilliant solution.

    I know that a lot of people have a negative reaction to graffiti. I understand that as a former shop keeper whose exterior signs were tagged and defaced. My ex-husband took it personally, but it’s part of living in an urban center, right?

    Even though there are downsides, I still admire the colourful and creative “oeuvre.” And in this particular project, I think the “fix” disproves the saying that “two wrongs don’t make a right.”

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Maggie, well said! You’re right that this cleverness disproves the old saying. I’d never promote graffiti, but if it turns up and you can make a positive point out of it, then I’m onboard with it. Especially in this particular case.

      Liked by 4 people

  2. This is a wonderful response to hate. So often we’re told just to ignore it but I don’t think that really helps. The haters and trolls of the world just amp up their game until we can’t ignore it anymore. Edmund Burke said “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Why not respond with love and humor instead of participating in the circle of hate?

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Zazzy, I’ve always liked that quote, too. I agree with you that by ignoring the hate, it continues to grow unabated. But these artists have tackled the problem straight on– and in a way that makes me smile. My guess would be that haters don’t like it when their attempts at intimidation get turned into artsy cuteness.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Love, love, love what these artists have done with a symbol of hate. It’s good that they do this with fun and love in their hearts. This would be an awesome worldwide undertaking to humorously cover up those symbols in a showing of peaceful solidarity. Thanks for sharing this story, Ally, and participating in #WATWB.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. bikerchick57, I like your idea for turning this anti-swastika art into a worldwide project. It’d send a good message about the limits of hateful symbols. Plus, all these revised swastikas are cute– and the world could use some more cute!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Hate into great – this is so wonderful and kudos to those artists who niftily took the hate out and gracefully changed it all .. I watched the video clip earlier and it is so creative. Great post Ally Bean thank you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Susan, when I first saw what the artists were doing I realized how easy it was for them to transform the swastikas into something better. Just wish that all forms of hate could be turned into something better so easily.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Beth, I thought this group of artists was delightful. You have to give it up for their creativity and determination. Wonder if their idea will take off in other parts of the world?


    1. Deborah, I agree. The transformative aspect of this anti-swastika art is what makes it great. These artists are the creative spark that our world needs, if it is to heal and become whole [again?].


  5. Sometimes the simplest solutions are the most effective. I ❤️ this creative, collaborative, positive effort! Thanks for sharing this, Ally!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. These are adorable! I love that they didn’t just paint over them to leave another blank canvas. Can you imagine having your hate message turned into a goofy bunny? hahahha I love it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. datmama4, I thought the same thing. There you are doing your hateful best to intimidate people, and you return to see your graffiti– only to find it cute-i-fied. Cannot imagine that goes over well with neo-Nazis. Oh well…


    1. Janis, I’d be happy to learn that the haters had given up on their hate because these artists kept turning their swastikas into something clever. Now that would be a stupendously great story!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hi Ally – I hadn’t come across these artists before … what a great idea to turn negative graffiti into something positive – and so artistic … love it … cheers Hilary


    1. Margaret, aren’t you sweet! I like these artists and am glad that someone somewhere has found a good way to mitigate the negative impact of those swastikas.


    1. Kate, I thought the same thing. The guys look like a smart + fun group of people who obviously have figured out a great way to fight back, with what they have, against a hateful symbol.


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