Artist Interview

Eclair Bandersnatch: Street Artist for the Snowden Age

Eclair Bandersnatch: Street Artist for the Snowden Age
Annalee Newitz, Gizmodo

Walk pretty much anywhere in San Francisco’s SoMa, Haight or Mission neighborhoods, and you’ll see one of Eclair Bandersnatch’s glittery stencils, often featuring “Saint Snowden” or Chelsea Manning. We talked to Bandersnatch about bringing art, tech and politics together on the streets.

Bandersnatch has been stenciling San Francisco streets for several years, and her subjects run the gamut from Godzilla to ladies who look like they’d be comfortable at a 1920s party along the Barbary Coast. Her vision is uniquely San Franciscan, mixing internet politics with a queer sensibility — and heaping dose of humor.

And ever since Snowden began to tell the media about the NSA’s secret surveillance plans, Bandersnatch has been turning the Snowden Age into street art. Here’s our interview with her.

Giz: Why are Chelsea Manning and Ed Snowden important to your work?

Eclair Bandersnatch: My work? They’re important to my life! And they should be important to everyone’s life!

On the midnight prowl with one of S.F.’s hottest street artists

On the midnight prowl with one of S.F.’s hottest street artists

By Ryan Kost (SF Chronicle)
June 1, 2015

The street artist known as fnnch stands at the corner of Capp and 19th. It’s just started to rain, the sort of rain you can feel but you can’t see unless you catch it in a car’s headlights. He’s staring at a postbox just across the way, freshly painted, a blank canvas. “I really want to hit this box.”

But there are people near it, drunken and rowdy people, people who holler at the woman pacing in front of the corner store. “I got a dollar for you, baby. What’s up?”

Fnnch keeps watching them, and then, after a few minutes, he starts walking. “I don’t think they’re going to care,” he says. “There’s only one rule: Let me know if a cop is coming. Like, nothing else really matters.”

Interview with IRL, anti-tech graffiti artist

Interview with IRL, anti-tech graffiti artist
22 Feb 2015  Renzo (for the Wildernist)

I’d been seeing anti-tech graffiti around my town [Chapel Hill, NC] for the better part of a decade. Over the course of months it would appear in bursts, then slowly fade as the authorities cleaned it. Some places, images, or slogans only seemed to appear once, while others were clearly contested territories where cleaning and painting happened regularly. For years I wondered who the vigilantes that made my walks and bike rides so much more exciting could be. In a funny synchronicity, I finally met “IRL” through a mutual friend the same week another friend of mine started an anti-technology journal. We wandered for an hour all over town, behind warehouses, down train tracks, and beneath bridges discussing this very particular subset of graffiti. Some edits have been made for clarity. — Renzo

Renzo: So, you're an anti-technology graffiti writer. What's that mean?

IRL: I'm a graffiti writer who believes that technological society is the greatest threat to human freedom and that's reflected in my art or vandalism or whatever you wanna call it.

Renzo: What kind of graffiti do you do?

IRL: I play with everything I can. Tagging, scrawling, stenciling, stickers, billboard defacement, wheatpaste posters. It really depends on the image or message and the surface or neighborhood.

fnnch (SF) Interviews with Hoodline

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow: Alamo Square's Ladybug Art

http://hoodline.com/2014/11/here-today-gone-tomorrow-alamo-square-s-lady...

photo by fnnch

You might have taken a stroll through Alamo Square Park within the last month and noticed something a little out of the ordinary: a line of small, bubbly beetles that seemed to be marching across the pavement in single file.

Here one day and gone soon after, the ladybugs were a cheerful, albeit brief, addition to Alamo Square's winding paths and overgrown gardens.

Here's another look at the ladybugs as tweeted out by the artist, known simply as fnnch:

The art installment has since been painted over by maintenance crews, but the artist behind the work is still going. We got in touch to have a chat about the ladybugs, the street art lifestyle, and the artist's creative influences.

Hoodline: What inspires you?

fnnch: “I find nature inspiring, particularly birds, bugs, and vegetables. But aesthetically I prefer solid swaths of color and solid lines. My artwork, at some level, is just the fusion of these two.

“I’m also inspired by a lot of artists, some well-known, some not. On the more famous side are Frank Stella, Keith Haring, Andy Warhol and Ellsworth Kelly. I’m also a fan of prominent street artists Banksy and Roadsworth.”

Drew Copus Interviewed (E. Sussex, UK)

Metamorphosis

Hastings Online Times Original interview here

St. Leonards based street artist Drew Copus’ first solo show, Metamorphosis is showing now at The Dragon Bar, 71 George Street TN34 3EE Hastings.  HOT’s Rebecca Snotflower and Andy Tompkins ask him 12 very important questions.

You may well recognise the butterfly motif stencil drawings on display within the exhibition from the walls along your daily routes around the town. The pieces look like they have been stolen from the landscape of Hastings, as they sit on their reclaimed wooden surfaces, collectively displayed in the bar by some kind of crazy graff-loving entomologist. Some pieces include a symmetry of lines and shapes, which make me think of the mathematical arrangements behind seemingly chaotic natural structures… obviously I don’t think about it too hard, it makes my brain ache. The exhibition as a whole has an unmistakable DIY glamour – and a heap of punk attitude.

Interview with Melanie Cervantes

Third World Press Collective just had a great talk with sometimes-stencil artist Melanie Cervantes. Melanie and her husband Jesus Barraza crank out amazing political posters for many great causes. Years ago, Jesus told me that he learned how to screen print from old school printers who called the screens "stencils" (and acutally used stencils to occasionally put the image on the screen). I first met Melanie while photographing her stencils at the old Counterpulse space.

"Brown & Proud" by Melanie Cervantes and Jesus Barraza (Stencilada 2009)

Feminist Fistbumps: Artist Melanie Cervantes Discusses Art as Decolonial Activism

Happy Monday! This week we move the arts conversation from the East coast (remember Maribel and Cristy, who are living in Brooklyn?) back to the West coast! Here is our latest interview with California-based artist Melanie Cervantes, who donated a fierce piece to the online art auction that was curated by Chris Davila in December.   

Third Woman Press Collective (TWPC): Melanie, we know you’re really busy, and we thank you for joining us this week. Let’s start off by talking about your group, Dignidad Rebelde. Can you tell us a little more about it?

Melanie Cervantes (MC):  Sure! Dignidad Rebelde is a collaborative space for building community and producing art. We believe that art can be an empowering reflection of community struggles, dreams and visions. Following principles of Xicanisma and Zapatismo, we create work that translates people’s stories into art that can be put back into the hands of the communities who inspire it.

Peter Kuper Interview (Audio)

Peter Kuper is a long-time stencil artist, co-founder of World War 3 Illustrated (with long-time stenciler Seth Tobocman), and current creator for Mad Magazine's Spy vs. Spy. When I was compiling my Oaxaca section for Stencil Nation, Peter was kind enough to take a few minutes from his insane schedule and send me some photos. One photo of a rice stencil ended up in the book. Glad to finally get an interview with him posted on this site (thanks to Boing Boing and RiYL, and Brian Heater).

Interview audio here.

Every time I speak to Peter Kuper, the conversation invariably turns to New York — or, as is often the case, begins there. It’s my own fault. I’ve got this insatiable need to ask fellow residents, artists in particular, what keeps them in the city’s orbit. Kuper is a particularly interesting case study, having left the city — and country — in 2006, for a life in Mexico.

invurt.com Interviews DLUX (Now and Then, Melbourne)

Interview – DLUX – James Dodd

http://www.invurt.com/2014/05/14/interview-dlux-james-dodd/
 

It’s 2004, Melbourne, and things for the cities vibrant stencil art community are about to change. For many years the stencil was king – so much so that books were written, international websites spawned and a global movement eagerly watched the streets come alive in nooks and crannies with cut and sprayed works of art. from the political to the humourous,  – in these days, freedom aerosol was still, for the most part, mostly practiced by graffiti artists and what we know as the “street art scene” was dominated by stencils and the artists who created them, plied a swaths across the city.

But 2004 was the year of a major international event in Melbourne, the Commonwealth games, and with it came a massive cleanup across the city – walls washed and sterilised in the name of “making shit look better”, and with the cleanup went many of the cities beloved stencil art. The City of Melbourne, as hard as it may be to believe these days, went to “war” on graffiti and street art, one which, in hindsight, it appears it was less a victor than at the time it had thought it had been.

It was the year that the first incarnation of the Blender studios was shut down, and the year that the Everfresh studios opened – it was a time of transition between the old, and the new. Artist such as Sync, Ha-Ha and, of course, Dlux, three artists who had been right in amongst the stencil art and street art movement, moved off into different directions – continuing to pursue their works and enlivening their, and consequently our, surroundings.

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