- Associated Press - Friday, August 8, 2014

LEXINGTON, Ala. (AP) - Imagine taking a three-month tour of the United States and being allowed to use the sides of old barns as a paint canvas.

That’s what one woman from Australia is doing. The woman, a street artist who uses the name Kaff-eine, just spent a couple of weeks in Lexington touring the area and painting designs on barns.

She came to north Alabama with an invitation from businessman Fran Guerra, who owns Guerra Holdings. One of its subsidiaries, Global Special Effects, does business with the woman’s friend in Australia.

“It’s so lovely here,” she said. “I did three or four paintings in New York City, in Brooklyn and Queens. Then, I did three in the Pittsburgh area and one in Kentucky before coming down here to stay with Fran and his family.”

Kaff-eine left Lexington for New Orleans on Tuesday, but plans to come back through the area before returning to her home in Melbourne.

“I was a lawyer and had worked in the public sector,” she said.

“Painting was just a hobby until I found out I could do commissioned works. I’ve had the opportunity to travel the world and meet wonderful people.

“This old barn in a cornfield just welcomed me, and I thought the murals would be a nice gift back to the community.”

Guerra said his friend in Australia told him she was coming to the United States.

“We gave her a place to stay and found her a couple of places to paint,” he said. “It’s amazing what she can do with a spray can of paint. I love it. I would like to see what she can do on a flat street surface.”

She painted a large rabbit, or snowshoe hare, on one side of a barn behind Global Special Effects on Lauderdale 71. On the back of the barn, she painted a reindeer.

“Both of them have something to do with snow and that’s Fran’s business, making snow,” she said.

Kaff-eine said she paints her designs mostly on walls of deserted buildings or on bricks.

She said while in New Orleans she hopes to find a deserted building from Hurricane Katrina and paint something on it to improve its appearance.

She does her smaller pieces of art in a studio using watercolors.

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