Brooklyn-born Phil Shafer had made his way to Kansas City’s art scene by the late ‘90s. Back then, he was Sike Style and started out pasting posters and stickers under the veil of anonymity that nighttime lends.
“I got my start as a street artist going out at night and putting up art for people to find in the morning.” Shafer doesn’t consider himself a street artist anymore, however, and now goes by Sike Style Industries. “I've worn many hats over the years,” he says. “As a graphic designer, DJ, curator, fine artist, lecturer and muralist as of late … now I have evolved that into a business as a muralist.”
The graphic designer in Shafer, however, still comes through clearly in his art, which utilizes bold colors and clean lines. “My goal is to transform bland or vandalized surfaces into murals that uplift and inspire the neighborhood residents,” he says.
“Whether it is through the use of Maya Angelou quotes painted on bricks or abstract shapes of color sprayed on a doorway, the idea that public art can change a space and help people feel pride in their surroundings is important to me.”