Wednesday, November 4, 2009

October 2009: Kid Chalao in Madrid

One of the reasons I love street art hunting is because it's an exercise of patience. So often, I find myself running from one activity to another with little down time in between. When I'm looking for street art, I'm forced to slow my pace and look for tiny details within the big picture. Looking for a sticker or wheatpaste is almost like meditating. Kid Chalao and I share the same philosophy about street art; maybe that's why I like him so much. (It could also be that his paintings are fantastic.) He writes:
“My name means 'nuts, crazy boy'. I think it is good being just a boy; everything remains to be learned and there are no certainties. Don´t really believe in those.”
"Even though I’m living, working and studying in Madrid, I come from a region in north-midwest Spain where there´s a really strong wine culture and an amazing folklore filled with stories and really old pagan tales. I´m mostly interested in tales and creatures, as well as in language itself. And I mean common people´s language, not the one they use from Institutions or from the power itself (which has nothing to do with people, but with the individual).”
"I do not really come from a graffiti background, but from a punk one, so those early paintings were just messages on walls. Before that , my brother and I used to write our nicknames in wet concrete. There´s still a few remnants of that in my hometown. Years after that, I moved to Finland for a year, where I started to become much more active with my friend Virta. Now I´m painting quite a lot in Madrid with my hobo-crew called VHS. Good vibes, fun and colorful stuff! We´re part of an urban-art open workshop at Patio Maravillas, a self-sustained social center in Madrid.”
"Urban art seems to be nothing but a present or a joke in the way that you´re wasting your energy, time and money just to suggest things, make people smile or share some ideas. Of course, you get nothing in exchange but these things got to be done if for nothing else, for conviction. Somehow in a world in which we´re forced to walk and listen to the media 24/7, I think it is beautiful to struggle for spreading art in our neighborhoods and cities, so we can gain some sanity.”
“I´m not sure about anything but as life is becoming faster and faster in cities, maybe we can try to endorse the value of “slow” and create art pieces that tell people to slow down and imagine for a change. But who knows…”

Gracias, Kid Chalao! For more fabulous photos, check out his Flickr.

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