Wednesday, January 20, 2010

January 2010: Jerm IX in Vancouver

Jerm IX may live and work in Vancouver, but you can catch his work all over the place. From the Bogotá Stencil Festival to Venice Beach, California, he makes his presence known. Armed with paper, stencils, and quotes (both his own and those of other celebrities), he shares his thoughts and images with people across the globe. Today, he checks in from western Canada. He writes:
"I toyed around a bit with aerosol in the early 90's, but it was about 4 years ago that we started the Jermalism campaign."
"My wife, Ninja IX, is my partner. We spend a good chunk of our time together creating pieces, which are hand-made with stencils and permanent markers, as well as wandering every nook and cranny of the city together. I have also enjoyed collaborating with several street artists, both locally and globally. But I'm at my best when I'm flying solo; that's when I make the best work because I'm brutally honest. I write alone, always.""When we came to the conclusion that we should be putting up our own work, it was just a matter of convenience. I found myself with access to unlimited amounts of purolator stickers, which I immediately began to stick together end to end and create large 'banners'. I chose to abandon the idea of tag form, or any sort of script, and settled immediately on the traditional store bought 2 inch stencil letters. I find that not only do the stencil letters give the illusion of authority or authenticity to the piece in its urban home, but also by removing any aesthetic and creativity from the letter style, the words themselves take center stage. Eventually when the sticker supply dried up, I happily moved on to tearing scrolls from large rolls of paper.""When you spend the majority of your existence wandering, you witness a lot of craziness. One night in a notorious drug alley in Vancouver's infamous downtown eastside, while pasting up giant band-aids with a few friends, a group of people jumped a guy behind us and literally kicked in his skull. Then they scattered it. It was vicious and made me feel sick. But 99 percent of the missions are pleasant."
"Still firing off the scrolls and direct quotes, and very much enjoying it. I'm in the process of recording a hip-hop album and I'm also writing a novel with heavy street art themes. I have sent out over 200 paste-up packs of my banners around the world in the last week and a half. There are a few other projects in my head."

Thanks, Jerm IX! For more photos, check out his Flickr.

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