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Gold was born into a Jewish family in Fresh Meadows, Queens, and Roslyn, New York, and attended the Fashion Institute of Technology until she dropped out in 1986. Through the late 1980s and early 1990s, her icon, a fat paw with three claws, could be seen all over the New York graffiti landscape, as she bombed walls and trains with the graffiti crews TC5 and FC at a time when the scene was dominated by men. Claw became her nickname due to her spunky and steadfast personality during childhood. She came up with the Claw throw-up because of the W in her name.
Gold is one of the most renowned female graffiti artists and her artwork history dates back to 1989 when her Claw became part of the city's urban sprawl. After making her distinct mark throughout NYC, she made another creative move, becoming the fashion editor and director at Swindle Magazine. Acclaimed[by whom?] as one of the most important street artists of all time, her significance has been commemorated in the two most prominent films on the subject of graffiti and is the focus of the first in a series of women in art documentaries produced and featured by Google. Having long since abandoned her former ways, Gold now stands as a curator of cool, fashion editor, commissioned artist and fashion designer whose products transcend her company’s offerings under her ClawMoney and Claw and Company labels.
She moved to Los Angeles in 1995 and started styling, which led her to become a vintage dealer. She then moved back to New York in 1997 and started making clothes.
She has been influenced by numerous other graffiti artists such as Zephyr, Dondi, Revolt, Sharp, Dontay, Devo and MQ. Zephyr especially had an influence because they were friends and he showed her some of New York's most illusive outlaw artists.
Claw Money Collaborations
She has changed the landscape and set precedents by being the first woman to do collaborations with companies such as Calvin Klein, Mark Ecko, Gpen, Lord & Taylor, rag & bone, Nascar, Good Wood, Ugg Australia, converse, Vans, Mountain Dew, K2 Snowboarding, My Little Pony, Boost Mobile, and Nike, with whom she designed two styles of Claw Money custom sneakers. Her graphic designs are influenced by influences that mostly come from her childhood: Peter Max, the Smurfs, Strawberry Shortcake, Bugs Bunny, comic books, Hello Kitty, video games, and pop culture in general. While designing she likes to listen to mostly to oldies, lots of ’50s girl groups, Bill Withers, hip hop pre-’95, disco, and punk rock. In 2007, Bombshell, The Life and Crimes of Claw Money was published by powerHouse Books.
Claw & Co.
As of June 2014, Claw will be launching the debut line of Claw & Co.
In 2012, she was the subject of the short documentary Claw by the digital channel WIGS.
Today she runs the eponymous clothing line Claw Money, which has a celebrity following that includes M.I.A. (artist), Kanye West, Kreayshawn and Santigold. Internationally renowned companies continue to call upon her for her insight, history, heritage and authenticity that she brings when creating or collaborating new products or art direction for their campaigns.