Punk Subculture

What is Subculture?

In 1936, scientists use the word subculture to talk about bacterial cultures. A subculture is a group of people within a larger culture, such as a country, who have something in common. They share religious or political beliefs or can even be science fiction fans.

A culture is how people live, sometimes based on where they live. For example, American culture, Canadian culture or to an Australian culture. Within these larger cultures, there are also subcultures.  Also, subcultures can be based on interests, like “Deadheads” who used to follow around the rock band “The Grateful Dead.”

   The punk subculture, centres on punk rock music. Punk rock is a rock music genre that developed between 1974 and 1976 in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Punk rock bands rejected mainstream 1970’s rock. Punk bands use short or fast-paced songs. Hard-edged melodies, singing styles, stripped-down instrumentation, and political, anti-establishment lyrics. Punk embraces a DIY ethic. Many of the bands recordings are self-produced and were distributed through unofficial channels. The punk subculture is anti-establishment and the promotion of individual freedom.

Punks are frequently categorised as having left-wing or progressive views. Their ideologies are mostly concerned with individual freedom and anti-establishment views. Common punk viewpoints include anti-authoritarianism, a DIY ethic, non-conformity, direct action and not selling out.

Characteristics of punk fashion

-offensive t shirts

-Doc Marten Boots

-Spiky hair/Mohawks

-Body modifications, cosmetics, tattoos

-pins, buttons,metal studs and spikes

Punk artwork are mostly on album covers, flyers for concerts, and punk zines. Punk has generated a considerable amount of poetry and prose. Punk has its own underground press in the form of punk zines, which feature news, gossip, cultural criticism, and interviews.   Punk zines are Maximum RocknRoll, Punk Planet, No Cure, Cometbus, Flipside,and Search & Destroy .

Punk visual art was made to shock, create a sense of empathy or revulsion, to make a grand point with an acidic or sarcastic wit. Characteristic of punk art is the usage of letters cut out from newspapers and magazines, normally associated with kidnap and ransom notes. A prominent example of that style is the cover of the Sex Pistols’ Never Mind the Bollocks album designed by Jamie Reid.

Images and figures are also sometimes cut and pasted from magazines and newspapers to create a collage.

Samples of Punk Art.

Contemporary artists inspired by Punk Art:

Charlie Anderson

John Holmstrom , founder and editor of Punk magazine:






So Many Roads: The Life and Times of the Grateful Dead


Punk Fashion, 1970s Style



Charlie Anderson’s Pop Art Paintings Have A Real Punk Art Style


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