Patti Astor obituary, founder of New York gallery that promoted graffiti art

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When Patti Astor opened the Fun Gallery in New York’s East Village in 1981 graffiti art was something found only on the street.

Scouring the Big Apple’s five boroughs for the artists whose tag names she saw on murals sprayed on derelict walls and the New York subway, she brought the aerosol artists in off the streets and offered them gallery space. In doing so she almost single-handedly invented the market for street art that led to Banksy’s works selling for millions at Sotheby’s.

The list of the graffiti artists whose work Astor championed is evocative. Dondi, Futura 2000, Fab 5 Freddy, Zephyr, Revolt, Lady Pink, Crash, Daze, Quik and countless others exhibited at the Fun Gallery. So too did Keith Haring and the late

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