Although Banksy and other graffiti artists still get most of the news coverage, there is a growing cadre of chalk artists that are plying their trade, sometimes anonymously and sometimes signed, across the United States to growing acclaim.
It’s no surprise that San Francisco leads the way in chalk artistry. The city has set aside funds to employ chalk artists to decorate the sidewalks around public playgrounds with whimsical fairy tale figures and heroic comic book figures.
Chicago has white washed several blank building sides for the express purpose of chalk drawing. The city provides youth with free colored chalk balls to sketch whatever they want — within limits of public good taste, of course.
Bistros everywhere from New Orleans to Salt Lake City have paneled their walls with chalkboard, and hired the best local chalk artists to draw not only ornate menu options but fantastical portraits of local and historical interest — like Jean LaFitte the pirate in New Orleans, or Brigham Young in Salt Lake.
And one of the trendiest birthday party stunts in 2019 is to hire a chalk artist, or a whole team, to decorate every available blank space outside of a boy or girl’s home with representations of their favorite superheroes and cartoon characters.