Stephen Powers (also known as ESPO) was born and raised and Philadelphia, then moved to New York City in 1994. In 1984 Steve Powers started climbing rooftops in his neighborhood and painting his alias ESPO.
Dedication to making the world a better place may seem overzealous for an artist but Stephen Powers is the exception to the rule. He has been an influential contributor to bettering the lives of teenagers from troubled housing projects by teaching art in Ireland, fighting for human rights in Guantanamo Bay, and spreading the love with his most recent Love Letter Street Mural Exhibit for which returned to Philadelphia. The letter, meant for one, with meaning for all, encompasses 50 walls on a 20 block stretch of market street. Drawing input, inspiration, and work from the community Powers created a letter to and from west Philly.
ESPO, meaning Exterior Surface Painting Outreach, is revered for his graffiti, signage on the street as well as huge art installations in galleries such as Deitch Projects, Collette and Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. Aside from his successful career as a professional gallery artist, he is also a Fulbright scholar, a participant in the 49th Venice Biennale, and author of artist books. He lives and works in Manhattan.
Check out Stephen Powers' amazing past exhibition at SFMOMA.