Street artists will paint more than 40 murals to KC’s Crossroads
Kansas City’s Crossroads Arts District is about to get a lot more colorful, as dozens of artists are set to add more than 40 new murals to the neighborhood starting Sunday.
The third annual SpraySeeMO mural festival bills itself as the “largest ever” painting exhibition, where the public can watch artists coat the walls of downtown buildings with creative imagery in real time.
The event, scheduled Sept. 8-15, features several top street artists and muralists from Kansas City and around the world, who will paint predominantly in the Crossroads and in a part of Midtown, according to organizers. Artists visiting from around the U.S. as well as other countries will be flying in next week.
Vince Sanders, of CBD American Shaman, the lead sponsor of this year’s festival, said he has always been a fan of street art and fell in love with the idea of a festival “bringing street art to Kansas City in a large way,” he said. Inspired by artistic hot spots like Wynwood Walls in Miami and the Bushwick Collective in Brooklyn, the vision, Sanders says, is to put Kansas City on the map and create a national — or international — arts festival driving thousands of people to the city.
Attendees at this year’s event are encouraged to meet the artists and watch them work. They can also join Graffiti KC for a walking tour or take a ride on the Barley Bus for a mobile tour of the walls.
Highlighted free activities throughout the week of the festival include the annual SpraySeeMO Group Exhibition, a Birthday Bash at The Truman KC and a Secret Walls art battle featuring Molly Balloons and DJ Sheppa.
After a week of painting, the SpraySeeMO Board is expected to pick the top three murals and artists to share in prize money totaling $10,000.
To kick off the week-long festival, members of the public are invited to meet the participating artists at 7 p.m. Sept. 8 at the International Tap House, located at 18th and Oak streets.
“I just hope that someone who maybe has never even experienced street art will come and check it out because it is amazing,” Sanders said. “Words really can’t describe when you stand there and watch somebody paint these things that are world-class quality in an outside environment on a large scale with a spray can. It’s hard to believe unless you witness it.”
For more information about the 2019 SpraySeeMO Mural Festival, including a schedule of events, list of mural locations and featuring artists, visit www.sprayseemo.com. The festival is free to attend and open to the public.