The Creativity of Female Graffiti & Street Artists Will Be Celebrated in Street Heroines, a New Documentary

Street art is a fre­quent­ly dan­ger­ous game. The threat of arrest pales in com­par­i­son to some of the haz­ards long time prac­ti­tion­ers describe. While oth­er artists sketch in pleas­ant cafes, cre­ators of large-scale street pieces often have no choice but to wrig­gle through ragged holes in chain link fences and climb to ver­tig­i­nous heights to get to their can­vas­es.

There’s a pop­u­lar con­cep­tion of graf­fi­ti artist as lone wolf, but when it comes to the per­ils of the street, there’s safe­ty in num­bers. You need a crew. Female street artists must draw on the pow­er of sis­ter­hood.

As pho­to­jour­nal­ist Martha Coop­er notes in the trail­er for direc­tor Alexan­dra Hen­ry’s Street Hero­ines, above:

I think bring­ing women togeth­er empow­ers them and there’s been some resis­tance on the part of men…it has to do with cama­raderie too. It’s not that they’re say­ing, “You can’t do it,” but they’re just not allow­ing them in to their inner group.

Appar­ent­ly, street art is some­thing of an old boy’s club.

“What!?” gasps Lady Pink, a well known vet­er­an with over 35 years’ expe­ri­ence. “You need a penis to climb a lad­der? Does it help you hold on?”

The female cama­raderie Coop­er cites extends to the suc­cess­ful fund­ing of a Kick­starter cam­paign to com­plete this doc­u­men­tary on “the courage and cre­ativ­i­ty of female graf­fi­ti & street artists from around the world.” As the dead­line loomed, Lexi Bel­la & Danielle Mas­tri­on, two of the women fea­tured in the doc­u­men­tary, issued an open invi­ta­tion to New York City-based female artists to join them in cre­at­ing a spur-of-the-moment mur­al in Brook­lyn, sur­ren­der­ing artis­tic con­trol to embrace com­mu­ni­ty spir­it.

street heroines2

Many of the 25 artists Hen­ry has pro­filed thus far speak of using their work to bring beau­ty to the street, and to advo­cate on behalf of the oppressed. Such earnest­ness may dimin­ish them even fur­ther in the eyes of the old school He Man Woman Haters Club. Lexi Bel­la coun­ter­bal­ances the laugh­ably soft image cer­tain macho prac­ti­tion­ers may assign to them by speak­ing unapolo­get­i­cal­ly of the thrill of mak­ing one’s work as big as pos­si­ble “so mil­lions of peo­ple can see it.”

Street Hero­ines is aim­ing for release in 2017.

via The Cre­ators Project

Relat­ed Con­tent:

Google Puts Online 10,000 Works of Street Art from Across the Globe

The Bat­tle for LA’s Murals

The Odd Cou­ple: Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol, 1986

Ayun Hal­l­i­day is an author, illus­tra­tor, and Chief Pri­ma­tol­o­gist of the East Vil­lage Inky zine. Fol­low her @AyunHalliday

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