At the PSFK Conference New York 2010, contemporary artist and graffiti legend Steve Powers talked about his creative journey and the process and thinking behind Love Letter – arguably the longest love story ever written: a 20 block long grafitti ballad painted across West Philadelphia’s rooftops and walls.
Watch his presentation below:
Some highlights from Powers’s talk:
Powers nurtured his passion for art and storytelling as a young grafitti artist growing up in Philly. He followed this creative impetus to become one of Philadelphia’s most noted artists, and to give back to the community through his form of beautiful vandalism.
“Graffiti is advertising for what artists want to promote, which is style.”
Powers drew inspiration from all around him – even from food stand signs and roller coaster rides: “Whether rides or hot dogs, Coney Island signs are all advertising pleasure.”
Powers’ Love Letter project was a story told through collaboration, created with the help of the West Philly community, The Philadelphia Mural Arts Program, and the ’skilled hands of 20 of the finest spray painters in America.” The murals cover 50 buildings that face the elevated Market-Frankford metro line, intending to tell a personal love story to and about the people of Philadelphia while bringing art and unexpected beauty to their daily lives/commute. The enormous illustrations contain messages like “FOREVER begins when you say yes” and “If you were here I’d be home now.”