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Letch lurch! Teens fight catcallers with zombie mural • Brooklyn Paper

Letch lurch! Teens fight catcallers with zombie mural

Can’t stop, won’t stop: Noor Ul Ain paints a stop sign on a new mural in Bedford-Stuyvesant calling out creeps who catcall women on the street.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

These ladies want men to use their braaains.

A group of high-school girls are calling out catcallers by painting a mural on the wall of a Bedford-Stuyvesant grocery store that features zombies lurching after a terrified woman — a metaphor that organizers said illustrates both how thoughtless and terrifying street harassment can be.

“We wanted to show that the feeling of being catcalled or when someone says something disturbing, it causes fear,” said Danielle McDonald, a Greenpoint resident and art teacher who is overseeing the project. “So that’s where the zombies came from — something scary and mindless.”

Public art group Groundswell is paying the 20 young women — aged 15 to 21 — to splash the vertical vista on the side of a Food Bazaar on Myrtle Avenue between Broadway and Lewis Street as part of a wider project to create public artworks about social issues throughout the city, McDonald said.

The grocery outlet offered up its wall for one of the pieces, and the teens decided to use the space to rail against jerks in the area who harass women on the street, which they say is a persistent problem for local ladies that deserves more attention.

“It’s something everyone agrees is an issue, but nobody takes seriously,” said Nekita Blue, a rising senior from East Flatbush who also painted murals with Groundswell last summer.

The painters worked with McDonald and another artist to create a design for the 20-by-97-foot piece that features the creepy crawlers saying common catcalls like “I told you to smile” as well as a woman shaking her fist at the lame brains.

The crew began working on its monstrous masterpiece in July, and plans to unveil the final product at a public ceremony on Aug. 28.

Reach reporter Harry MacCormack at hmaccormack@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow him on Twitter @HMacBKPaper.
True colors: Young artists from Groundswell pose in front of their in-the-works mural, which depicts catcallers as zombies.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

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