Graffiti art is de facto legal in Wynwood, where there are more square feet of "permission-walls" in one compact area than almost any other city in the world. Property owners agree the art work is a positive addition to the neighborhood, and allow artists to express themselves out in the open in broad daylight. Without the fence jumping, cop dodging, back street, late night elements of illegal pieces, we saw more girls than ever doing street art this year. Here are just a few.
Note is from the Bronx. She says, "Painting doesn't matter what gender you are, but it's mad inspiring to see all these girls out here with such amazing talent. It really makes me want to take my work to the next level. There are more girls here painting this year than I've ever seen before. I'm 23. I started graffiti when I was like 13. My friends and uncles were doing it all my life, but when I started paying more attention to the streets, that's when I really got into it. I started doing tags on walls and making friends, and now I do it all the time. Wynwood has become like a real playground for writers."
Shiro is an internationally renowned artist from Shizuoka, Japan. She says, "I got started in 1998 when I saw a hip hop movie with graffiti in the background and I fell in love with the whole culture. In 2002 I moved to New York City to paint and be closer to the source of hip hop's birth. After two years I ran out of money and went back to Japan, but every summer since then I go back to New York, and starting 4 years ago I come to Miami every year for Art Basel. I've been featured in the "Art of Basketball" show here, and I always come to paint. I've also traveled to Europe, India, Shanghai, Australia, and New Zealand to make art."
She also has her own line of urban accessories, and a graffiti inspired coloring book.
Lady Mags and Amanda Lynn are from Oakland and San Francisco. They were busy painting when we ran into them.
But they did have time to thank their sponsors. "Iron Lak has been really generous with us girls," said Lady Mags.
Presa Hall is from New York and was painting her first mural in Wynwood where we caught up with her across the street from Panther Coffee.
"I'm really inspired by the beauty of the female form," she said.
"I like it here so much that I might stay."
"Some women may be afraid of the physical labor in painting an 18' wall, but I think it's good to tackle big projects like this."
"Miami is definitely a sexy place that embraces femininity. This piece is called Embrace Miami and it includes a poem I wrote as a way to thank the city."
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Meanwhile, Reds is a local working with property owners in the area to secure multiple permission walls for painting. She says, "I'm from Hialeah. I started like five years ago and shit, just drawing, and my dawg was like 'Yo, you should go hit some walls.' So I did."