Maren Conrad - Artist Statement
In dirty space between urban dwellings, above the frayed and broken concrete littered with needles and drenched in addiction, lies my opportunity to turn scenes of despair and danger into backdrops of joy, expression and value. These larger than life canvases of steel, brick and stucco become the destinations that define a city. My murals become the place where toddlers go to wish, where dandies go to peacock, and where cars appear toy sized against the background of giants. Each work may be a part of a developer’s project, or painted on a wall that someone has purchased, yet they are owned by no single person, not even their creator.
As a female muralist, the desire to transform dangerous alleys into stages for playful interactions originates from a place of self-preservation. The very places that now adorn my 12,000+ square foot creations were once places I would have dreaded to walk through alone. Using my passion as a vehicle that narrows the urban-planning gender gap is not simply insurance for my survival, it is my mission.