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IDEALISM-ART Interview 11 January 2013

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Idealism-Art Dublin

IrishStreetArt.com caught up with IDEALISM-ART, to find out a little more about the established Dublin graffiti writer, his roots and what has kept him active all these years.

IDEALISM-ART, Explain the name?

At first the name I used was simply “IDEAL” as these are the letters that I use to form most of my pieces. Then a few years later I considered a change of name but thankfully never went down that road. Instead I added on the “ISM” to give my name more substance. Finally in recent years the “-ART” bit was added simply as a way of making a quick and effective statement, “I am an artist, not a stereotypical delinquent with a spray can”.

Idealism-Art Dublin

How would you explain your style?

This is tricky question because in my eyes I am constantly evolving and trying to push my style. I think it is important and healthy to continue pushing yourself style-wise because it keeps you motivated and driven. Without a challenge it would become boring and monotonous very quickly. I guess, if I had to pick a few words to describe my style, I would say sharp, clean-cut, balanced and lively. In my eyes I am still on a journey style-wise of which I am still only halfway up the path to where I want to be.

Idealism-Art Dublin

So how did you get into graffiti?

It all started in the mid 90’s when I started taking the train to secondary school, that was my first real exposure to graffiti. There was a writer at the time called ZINC, his stuff was up everywhere, it was full colour, clean and complicated in terms of other stuff I had seen. He was the GRIFT of the 90s.. It was this new exposure to something I had never known that excited and amazed me. I knew this was for me, I had to do it. I was an absolute disaster for the first good few years, I didn’t have an artistic bone in my body. Out of frustration I contemplated giving up many times during this period but something kept me going.

I remember the first time walking down Windmill Lane, It was surreal there was full colour pieces by writers such as Maser, Rask, Kube, Artz, and Jor. Another place that blew my mind was Blackrock Baths, I remember walking in and seeing full productions by writers like Kube, Rask, Sek, Jor and Maser etc. This set me of on a journey that I am extremely glad I continued on, painting gives me something that nothing else in life can,it is my Zen.

Idealism-Art Dublin

What’s kept you in the game for the last 13 years?

This is my passion in life, I am deeply in love with it. I am an out and out addict constantly in search of my next artistic hit. It has been a love/hate relationship with lots of ups and downs, smiles and cry’s along the way. I have considered walking away at certain points but I love painting too much to ever leave for good, I’m a lifer.

Painting allows me to be free and clears my mind of all thoughts. My hunger for painting has grown year by year and shows no signs of slowing down. I don’t need others to motivate me I motivate myself out of my sheer love for what I do, if I want to paint then, BOOM, I go and paint, if not then I don’t. Writing has always been something personal for me, I have never felt attracted to any scene that may go along with it, I am happy painting, painting with no drama, I let my pieces do the talking. I am more than Happy to hook up for a paint with other writers but it is and never has been a priority. I have no interest in the politics and the who knows who, that bores me. What I am interested in is who can paint, who is active, who has the hunger and who is making visual noise etc…

Idealism-Art Dublin

What do you think of the state of the graffiti world in Dublin at the moment?

Over the years I have seen many writers come and go, some of which I imagine it was just a hobby which they grew out of like rollerblading or collecting coins, it simply stopped being cool. There are a handful of writers in Dublin,many of which started painting well before me, who have kept active and continue to push themselves harder and harder. They clearly share the same passion for graffiti that has kept me going. Those writers are a true inspiration and I admire and respect them all for doing their thing.

There is a lot of nice stuff being painted around Dublin. It is always great to see people putting work in producing good quality work many of which I would like to paint with. I am more than impressed by lots of talented writers around the city at the moment, some truly mind blowing stuff.

Idealism-Art Dublin

Who have been your biggest local/international influences?

Maser has always been my favourite Irish writer hands down. His stuff is always so clean-cut and flawless. He sets the bar very high and yes it is fair to say has been a strong influence in what I do.

Jor is another favourite of mine, his work is always so different and out there when compared to the usual more traditional pieces. He does things his own way and is not afraid to step outside of the norm. He made me realise that there are no rules, you can paint whatever you like. I don’t really spend time on the computer drooling Over amazing pieces done by international writers, I prefer the act of getting out there and painting as much as I can. A few writers that impress me internationally would be the likes of VODKER, PREYS, TEASER and ENOS. I have learned that you must paint for yourself, not to please others as there will always be haters. So my advice to other writers would be keep your head up, paint what excites you and don’t let others bring you down.

Idealism-Art Dublin

Shout Outs?
A big shout out to all Irish writers working hard, pushing themselves and keeping their head’s up. Special shouts to Phish, Deneb, Apt and Led.
P.S: Don’t forget to have fun.

For more visit Idealism-Art’s site or Idealism-Art on Flickr or follow him on facebook

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Adrian + Shane Interview 7 December 2012

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Adrian + Shane have been churning out pop art since 1998. IrishStreetArt.com caught up with the Drogheda couple to find out a little more about the Adrian + Shane brand.

Adrian and Shane Street Art

When did you two start making art together?

It started soon after we met each other. We got very drunk one night in Glasgow and started messing around in a sketch pad. We did ten pieces that night and have been collaborating since then.

When creating a piece what does each party bring to the table?

The process of making varies all the time, depending on the project. When we originally started making art together, we would take turns working on a canvas, and keep swapping it back and fourth until it looked finished. We didn’t know what we would end up with. Nowadays pieces are planned out and we rely on each others strengths towards creating a piece, especially if we are under pressure.

Fans of Irish Street Art will no doubt be familiar with your Iconic stenciled work have you a favorite piece?

We love our ‘March‘ image. It’s the image that people would associate with us most. The image was created during a ‘self-portrait’ photo shoot we did for a magazine a few years ago. It’s been manipulated countless times. It’s been the subject of many of our paintings and prints. And it’s the main image we’ve used on the streets, in paste up and sticker form. People regularly send us photos they’ve taken of it on the streets world wide. We love that they recognise it when they come across it even though there’s no text attached saying that it’s Adrian + Shane.

Adrian and Shane Street Art

How does the title ‘Ireland’s Gilbert and George‘ sit with you?

We’re really flattered. They are really successful and respected artists. Being compared to someone like that is a great compliment, we really like their work. Our work isn’t similar. We use different techniques. And create a very different product. They are two men who use themselves in their artwork and so are we, but that’s pretty much where the similarities end. We don’t plan to use piss and shit in our work anytime soon.

What was your personal highlight of 2012 and what can we look forward to from A + S in 2013?

We moved to London for a few months in the Spring to get some inspiration for new work. It was a really exciting time. Spending everyday exploring the city, visiting galleries and museums, meeting other creative heads, taking bucket loads of photos. Just really soaking up everything London has to offer. We made lots of new friends and connections.

Earlier in the year we did a range of T-shirts based on our stencils and they were a massive success. We sold so many all over the world, it was great to have such exposure and interest. We are currently planning several Adrian + Shane exhibitions for next year. We’ve been approached by gallery owners in London and New York. We’d also like to do a Dublin show. Watch this space.

Adrian and Shane Street Art

If anyone is interested in getting their hands on Adrian + Shane’s art, there are small canvases, prints and sticker packs available in their online store: adrianandshane.bigcartel.com To keep up to date follow A+S on Facebook,A+S on Twitter or Instagram: AdrianAndShane.

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Meep – Fresh From Donegal 4 December 2012

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meep-bundoran-street-art3

Budding Irish stencil artist, Meep told IrishStreetArt.com ‘ I draw inspiration from everyday characters and hope my stencils make people think of the story behind the person.’ Originally from Omagh, Meep now resides in the coastal town of Bundoran, county Dongeal. I’ve always had a passion for graffiti. I took to stenciling because basically I can’t draw and couldn’t draw my hand, but love the smell of spray cans and photocopy toner.’

meep-bundoran-street-art2

His most recent pieces are quite large, using material such as NAMA for sale signs as his canvas to be installed at a later date. ‘This allows me to complete in studio and drink tea in between layers and not freeze my nads off. Meep explained how location is an integral part of the final piece; ‘I would never post my stuff on the main street. I try to pick quite obscure, run-down, overlooked places to post my work. Just to bring a bit of life to such areas and make people open their eyes now and again.

Meep Bundoran Street Art

At the minute there are not too many of my pieces about, mainly due to their size and time they take, some slackness on my part and also some thievery. But hope to pull the finger out and post a few over the coming months along with some prints. Meep would love feedback on his work, to contact him directly email meep153@yahoo.ie.

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Chris Cunningham – Clean Cut Visuals 20 November 2012

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From his live showings at Whitewash to exhibiting at ‘More Than Meets The Eye’ at the Little Green Street Gallery in Dublin, 2012 has been a very busy year for, Christopher Cunningham. The Belfast stencil artist describes himself; ‘First and foremost ‘I am a painter, although I do like to think of myself as a bit of a jack of all trades and dabble in other forms of visual art.’

Cunningham, who for the most part, produces his work on canvas, tells us ‘As a stencil artist I painstakingly take blade to card and cut clean and precise marks to produce layers which are sprayed with aerosol paint to build up each line and colour on the canvas.’

‘For me everything I create from paintings to small vinyl toys have to have a crisp, clean cut machine like aesthetic. Although everything I make is done by hand I want the viewer to be mystified at how each piece is produced and ultimately question if it is machine or man made. Each piece I make is done so with this clean cut approach and ethic.

‘Thematically as a painter I heavily focus on my contemporary surroundings for inspiration and ask people to question certain ideals that people sometimes take as fact and not opinion. Advertising and media feature heavily in my work along with unquestioned ideals of capitalism and government ruling. I don’t profess to give any answers through my paintings I merely subvert and provide my own social commentary on contemporary issues in order to show other perspectives and open a dialogue for the viewer to draw their own opinions, and hopefully question the social norms that we are force fed by todays media outlets and governing bodies.

Most recently Chris has been creating for Canvas Galleries‘ ‘Christmas 200‘ exhibition which runs from Saturday 24th November 2012 until 24th December. With 20% of each sale going to mencap (supporting people with learning disabilities) the show is well worth a visit if you’re Christmas shopping in Belfast in the coming weeks. For more visit Canvas Galleries on Facebook For more great stencil work from Chris pop over to his portfolio site; Clean Cut Visuals or check out Chris Cunningham Art on Facebook

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Friz Interview 20 September 2012

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Fresh from her monster piece ‘Godzilla Vs The 15′ Luchador‘ on the Lisburn Road in Belfast, Friz hooked up with IrishStreetArt.com to share a few stories. Enjoy!

Lower Garfield Street, Belfast - Friz

Why the name Friz?

I grew up near the graveyard where W.B.Yeats is buried and we used to spend lots of time hanging around there in the Summertime when we were little( there’s a tea-house and the owner used to give us free ice-cream). Just as you’re leaving the graveyard there’s an old headstone with the name ‘Frizzelle’ on it. I used to take note of names I liked and found interesting to name my characters and I’ve always loved that one. I’ve been using Frizelle (my memory obviously leaving out the second z) for years and just shortened it to Friz for convenience.

How would you explain your technique and style?

I studied classical animation so that’s had a huge impact on my style, with Western and Eastern influences. My work is usually stylised and illustrative, I tend to break the rules of anatomy for my own needs when it suits. Technique-wise, when I’m using spray paint, I’m currently going for an animated cel-shading look with defined shadows. I just like to keep it clean and sharp, with lots of cut backs. I’ve been meaning to experiment more with tonal shading so that’s where I think my stuff will be heading down the line. I love me a skinny cap.

Rapunzel - Friz

What brought you from Sligo to Belfast?

I was actually in Edinburgh before moving to Belfast. I just felt like a change and my boyfriend was based in Belfast so I figured I’d give it a go. I’m glad I did because the music and art scene here is so energetic, don’t think I would have started painting murals if I’d gone anywhere else.

Could you tell us about the SPOOM Collective?

SPOOM came about pretty organically as a collective of artists/mates who frequently collaborated on large scale pieces. I did a ‘Street Art’ course in Belfast run by Trans when I moved over originally, that’s where I met KVLR (who was facilitating), Redmonk, Horsegoat and Lucas. Eventually expanded to include Bad Seed and MarcaMix. The line up changes with each piece but it’s all SPOOM. There’s also a host of other collaborators we’ve had the pleasure of working with. Members are pretty spread out over Ireland and the UK at the moment: Belfast, Dublin, London and Edinburgh. I love that everyone involved has a really unique style so the challenge is to make a piece look harmonious.
Up The SPOOM!

Peace line Belfast, Friz

You seemed to have a crazy productive summer can you fill us in on your highlights?

Yeah, happy to say I’ve been busy! Highlights I guess would be revisiting a wall in Belfast with KVLR as part of the Cathedral Quarter Arts Festival that we’d painted a few years back, it was nice to give it a facelift since I’ve gained confidence using spray cans and the original piece was only the second time I’d spray painted anything. Hit a few festivals this year, Kings of Concrete, No Place Like Dome, Glasgowbury and Bray Summerfest. There’ve been two epic Whitewash events this summer run by the mighty DMC, always lethal craic with good people. Also particularly happy with the two pieces I did in my hometown this Summer, both steeped in local myth and legend, one of which was on 500′ of hoarding. Painting on the Peace-line in Belfast is also up, it’s such a historic wall and there’ve been some amazing pieces painted there. Got a chance to collaborate with some old and new faces as well, KVLR, Verz, DMC, JMK, Rask, Art by Eoin and This Means Nothing.

Grainne & Diarmuid, Sligo - Friz

What can we look forward to from Friz in the future?

Really excited about the Fesitval of Urban Art Sandyford 21st-23rd which I’ll be painting at on the Saturday and Sunday. The line up is immense. Culture Night in Belfast the Friday before is setting up to be epic as well, going to be lots of artists live painting on the day. Also going to be collaborating with Conor McGrath (FALL Longboards) and Kieron Black on an exhibition early next year in Belfast where we’ll painting on skate decks, yeo!

Ballast Quay, Sligo - Friz

Shout Outs?

Adam, KVLR, Redmonk, BadSeed, HorseGoat, Bore, Lucas, MarcaMix, Doc, Danleo, Mick Minogue, DMC, JMK, Rask, Verz , This Means Nothing.

For more Follow Friz on Facebook or visit ‘ThisisFriz.com

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Fintan Switzer – Realism on Killarney Walls 15 August 2012

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Fintan Switzer Street Art Killarney, Ireland

Fintan Switzer has received much acclaim of late for his breathtaking art on walls. The Killarney based artist told IrishStreetArt.com ‘I have been drawing and painting for as long as he can remember but only began taking it seriously at about sixteen when I started painting portraits.’ Switzer explains ‘For me, portraiture became quite tedious and I always hoped to paint my own scenes and thoughts. So putting work up outdoors seemed the furthest I could get from the familiarity of portraiture – so I gave it a go!’ The realist painter added ‘There seems to be such a rapid growth in street art. The bar is being set higher and higher every day, which is a great motivator. On Tuesday I might finish what I think is good a piece but by Wednesday some bollocks in Beijing might smash my piece and I’m back to square one – street art has to time for ego! For more visit Switzer on Flickr or FintanSwitzer.com


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The Assiduous Canvaz 9 August 2012

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Canvaz - Street Art Smile, Dublin

When Canvaz is not working on material for his his coming November Show, the Dublin based artist has been busy painting, pasting and installing some real thought provoking pieces. For more on his views on Street Art and a further look at his portfolio check out Canvaz on Flickr or visit canvazstreet.com.

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Will St Leger Video Interview 30 June 2012

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Will Saint Leger Street Art

Fresh from his latest successful project Cause & Effect, Dublin based street artist, Will St Leger (one of Ireland’s leading artistic commentators on the state the nation finds itself in) is interviewed below by Max Nesterak of artoben.wordpress.com. Well worth a view!

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Conor Harrington at Fame 2012 19 June 2012

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Cork street artist, Conor Harrington was in the South of Italy recently to take part in the Fame Festival. ‘Fame’ is the Italian for hunger but Conor joked that he spent most of his time eating there.

The beautiful painting above is a called ‘Dead Meat’. On this ‘black and white biggie’ he tells us ‘I’m not sure how long this will last as we had no permission to paint it. Someone even called the police but Angelino sweet-talked them into allowing us finish, but I guess the fact that it’s on a kiddie school and I painted 2 nude women could be a bit of a problem…’ For a more complete account of Conor‘s work at the Fame Festival visit his blog, ConorSaysBoom.

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Art By Eoin in Tipperary 11 June 2012

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Art By Eoin

Visual artist, Eoin O’Connor brings us a piece he completed last weekend on the side of a factory in Carrick-On-Suir, Co. Tipperary. Based in Lahinch, on the Atlantic Coast he mainly paints ocean inspired scenes. ‘I try to capture some of the energy experienced while in and around the water.’ Over the past year Eoin has been working towards merging the 3 areas in which he draw’s inspiration – surfing, street art and fine art. ‘My goal is to create something that can bridge the gaps between genres and stand alone as my own style.’ For more stimulate seascapes visit ArtByEoin.com

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This Means Nothing – Belfast 15 May 2012

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This Means Nothing - Reconstruct

Fresh from his exhibition titled ‘Rented Spaces‘, ‘This Means Nothing‘ told IrishStreetArt.com of his most recent project. Rented Spaces was held in an unused coffee shop on Royal Avenue in Belfast. It was part of the open source project which aims to breath new life into empty retail units in Belfast through supporting the arts. ‘I was delighted to exhibit in a space of this nature rather than a traditional gallery setting.’

This Means Nothing has been living in Belfast for the past five years and his work represents his views on urban living ranging from the complex and disorderly nature of cities to the social and economic divisions within the metropolis. ‘I use paste-ups when working on the streets and use stencils when I have more time (permission) to paint.’

This Means Nothing will be painting at ‘Titanic Lock Down‘ on the 1st and 2nd of June at T13 in Belfast, as well as at Whitewash 6 in July. These are must not miss events for fans of Irish Street Art. To keep up to date with This Means Nothing follow his blog or facebook page.


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danleo 14 April 2012

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danleo

danleo was born in London in 1984 and returned to Ireland in the early 1990s where he studied Animation and Graphic Design at the Institute of Art Design and Technology, Dun Laoghaire. Using spray paint on canvas but applying it with a paintbrush, danleo has a unique and audacious graphic style, with a visual language all his own. It’s born out of a steady consumption of obscure cultures, music and street level art movements. Inspiration for his work often comes from nature, animals and mythology and he creates wild, visceral worlds that he populates with colourful low lives, omnipresent deities, and animal idols.

danleo - Cloak

Most of danleo‘s recent work has been centred on the idea of harmony between species and ancient beliefs. “I take a lot of influence from foreign cultures and ideas that may no longer be in practise. Flora and fauna feature heavily in my work but are often painted with a contrasting dark twist. In terms of technique I try to produce pieces that are clean, bold and colourful. The aim is to create work that looks as if it was made using vector software but have actually been painted by hand.”

danleo draws reference from a wide range of sources, though he owes much of his inherent aesthetic to the cartoons and comic books of his childhood. He builds back-stories to all of his works, researching ideas and deconstructing subjects, paring them down until the final piece becomes an ambiguous personal interpretation, leaving only subtle hints in the titles.

danleo’s work straddles graffiti culture, pop art and graphic illustration andRandom Specific presents a significant and confident first step in a distinctive stylistic exploration. For more visit danleodesign.com or danleo on facebook.

danloe – Update from Vancouver »
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Friz – Sometimes Sassy, Sometimes Sensuous 21 March 2012

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Friz - Queen Maedhbh

Friz is a Belfast based artist who works in both traditional and digital mediums. Her work is influenced by the study of classical animation. Friz is part of the SPOOM Collective, a group of artists who frequently collaborate on large-scale murals. Friz’s work largely revolves around the female form, creating a world of sometimes sassy, sometimes sensuous characters.

She has been invited as a guest artist to paint at such events as ‘Eurocultured’ in Manchester , ‘Smithfield Festival’ in Dublin, ‘N.P.L.D.’ Festival in Sligo and the ‘BASE Festival’ in Belfast.

Her works have been included in group exhibitions in both Belfast, Sligo and Dublin. In 2010 she was a member of the Dublin team competing in the Secret Wars Euro-League, the world’s premier live art battle involving 17 cities from around Europe. More recently her work has been showing as part of the ‘Tags not Labels’ exhibition in the Ulster Museum, which just finished up at the end of february. ‘A shot of my artwork from that show is on the current Northern Irish tourism board tv ad.’

She also just painted at the WhiteWash V live painting event alongside ADW, DMC, Visual Waste, SBK Fox, Matthew Knight, Chris Cunningham, Lee Boyd and BAG

She told IrishStreetArt.com ‘Once I have a character out of my head and down on a bit of paper, or on a wall or canvas, I’ve already started thinking about what I want to draw next, usually some form of fun, female character. I like using acrylic and spray paints for the same reason, they’re super quick to work with and you can get immediate results.’


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C215 in Dublin 12 March 2012

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Acclaimed Parisian street artist, C215 left his unmistakable mark on the streets of Dublin last week. Christian Guémy tells us “I try to interact with context, so I place in the streets elements and characters that belong especially to the streets. I like to show things and people that society aims at keeping hidden: homeless people, smokers, street kids for example”

His work is showing in the Offset Space exhibition in Little Green Street Gallery in the capital until friday.


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NOTA – None Of The Above 6 March 2012

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Don't Tread On Me

IrishStreetArt.com recently caught up with Belfast‘s Nota, who told us of how he became a street artist. Forced to leave school at a young age, Nota grew up as part of the local punk scene passing the days drawing and tagging. He eventually moved on to painting characters and simple pieces. ‘I haven’t done so much work with lettering or typography, but these days that is what I’m mainly interested in.’

Along with past personal experiences, Nota takes alot of inspiration from the punk and straight edge ethos. -Being true to yourself is the only thing that counts! F*ck the rest.

For more visit manchini.co.uk nota86.blogspot.com


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