A Love Letter For You: Brick Valentines On The Philly Skyline
Graffiti artist Steve Powers started painting his "ESPO" alias across the walls and rooftops of Philadelphia in 1984, just as the city's Anti-Graffiti Network was launched. Twenty-five years later, in the summer of 2009, he returned to Philly, armed with 1,200 cans of spray paint, 800 gallons of bucket paint and 20 of the finest spray-painters in America, to inscribe an epic love letter on the rooftops facing the Market-Frankfurt line, as a public art project. Powers consulted the community in West Philly and collaborated with The Mural Arts Program and the Pew Center, and with their help transformed this 20-block stretch of buildings into visual and architectural Valentine poems, with lines such as: "This love is real so dinner is on me" and "Knocked on your door/ legs tired back sore/ migraine for sure/ no more I swore you smile I'm cured." A Love Letter for You: Brick Valentines on the Philly Skyline documents in full color the art and the neighborhood that inspired Powers' work, and is designed as an open Valentine love letter for all to use.
Steve Powers was born and raised in Philadelphia, and then moved to New York City in 1994. After stints as publisher of On the Go magazine, author of the book The Art Of Getting Over and full-time graffiti writer, Powers opened a studio in January 1998.