Licking Street Art : Sweet Work from Shelley Miller

Wall Candy from Montreal Street Artist Shelley Miller

Shelley Miller has a sweet take on Street Art that embraces its ephemeral quality and merges it with tile making traditions from Spain and Portugal – and cake making. Using sugar and cake icing, she has brought the street occasional and temporary installations of historically based scenes that are inspired by old tile design, patterning, architectural motifs, and a decidedly calligraphic approach to letter style that most graff heads wouldn’t go near, unless they wanted a taste.

Shelley Miller. “Cargo” Montreal, 2009. Hand painted sugar tiles. Day 1 (photo © Shelley Miller)

Painstaking and faithful to traditional techniques that were originally used with more stable materials, Miller does her work on the street knowing fully well that it will be destroyed by the elements and that passersby will witness it’s disintegration as rain melts it away. Also, since it is edible, sometimes a kid will break off some pieces – or simply lick the wall.

Shelley Miller. “Cargo” Montreal, 2009. Detail. Hand painted sugar tiles. Day 1 (photo © Shelley Miller)

Shelley Miller. “Cargo” Montreal, 2009. Hand painted sugar tiles. Day 9 (photo © Shelley Miller)

Shelley Miller. “Cargo” Montreal, 2009. Hand painted sugar tiles. Day 15 (photo © Shelley Miller)

A more contemporary homage to the graffiti tradition, Miller did this “Throw Up” in Toronto for Nuit Blanche this year using sugar and food dye. (photo © Shelley Miller)

Shelley Miller. “Throw Up”. Detail.  Toronto, Nuit Blanche, 2012. Sugar and food dye. (photo © Shelley Miller)

Doing a fill with frosting. Shelley Miller. “Throw Up”. Detail.  Toronto, Nuit Blanche, 2012. Sugar and food dye. (photo © Shelley Miller)

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