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Artist is turning up the Temp

ITEM PHOTO BY SPENSER HASAK
Artist Temp of Lynn speaks about the inspiration behind the piece he is working on with Relm on Oxford Street.

By MATT DEMIRS

LYNN — When Temp was 12 years old, he painted his bedroom walls, ceilings, and floor with Disney characters.

That was then, this is now.

As part of the Beyond Walls mural festival, he’s joined with fellow Lynn artist Relm to deliver a portrait that best reflects the city’s history.

The pair will be putting their names up on the wall of 173 Oxford St. in unique lettering, joined with a drawing of what Temp describes as one of the first jets made by GE.

The pair will also include a more positive spin on a saying locals know too well.

“Instead of the old saying ‘Lynn, Lynn city of sin,’ it will say ‘Lynn Lynn city of firsts,” the 45-year-old said. “We’re tying the graffiti element with a little bit of Lynn history.”

Temp grew up downtown but moved to West Lynn with his family when he was a teenager.

“I’ve been waiting a long time for something like this to happen in Lynn,” he said. “I’m honored and appreciate the opportunity to be here.”

After starting his career marking the walls in his bedroom more than 20 years ago, Temp moved to neighborhood walls and the rest is history.

Temp says he put down the paint for short stints throughout his career, but never stopped drawing.

He’s taken part in mural festivals from here to Wynwood, Fla., one of the places where Al Wilson, founder and executive director of Beyond Walls, visited and became inspired to take a mural festival to Lynn.

Today, Temp will join fellow muralists Cey Adams and Caleb Neelon at RawArts to talk about the evolution of graffiti at the discussion “The History of American Graffiti,” which is also the title of Neelon’s book.

So far, Temp has heard a lot of positive feedback from the crowds gathering while he paints and couldn’t be happier to see the festival unfolding in the downtown, he said.

“Downtown Lynn can use a little brightening up,” he said. “If it puts a few smiles on people’s faces then that’s good enough for me.”


Matt Demirs can be reached at [email protected]

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