Stop 1

The first stop, which immediately caught my eye, is a mural of a beautiful, young woman dressed in conservative attire. She is lowering her gaze and clasping her scarf, implying a modest, protective stance. The flowers painted beside her complement the purity she projects. Funnily enough, when I looked up this piece, the artist who painted it, Akid One, named it ‘Damsel-flower’. This raised the question in my mind: is the fairytale ideology of ‘damsel in distress’ being transferred on to the streets as a means to attract a mainstream audience, as the books and movies do? Looking at other murals by Akid One, they were all of young, beautiful women. Are women deemed so incapable and weak that their only strength lies in their beauty? Are we just a pretty picture painted to attract a larger audience? This ‘damsel in distress’ notion has been so romanticized by movies and cartoons, that now street artists use it as a formula for art, almost guaranteed to make people stop and stare, as it did me.