a collection of words and images dedicated to my love: street art.
Friday, February 5, 2010
Friday ProFile: Faber
Graffiti with spray cans is a relatively new idea, but writing on walls is nothing new. From cave paintings to Egyptian hieroglyphs and early Roman civilizations, walls served as canvases long before Taki183. Today, street art is all about mixing and remixing ideas. Peruvian artist Faber acutely understands this delicate juxtaposition of the archaic and the avant-garde. “I think the most interesting places to paint are those that are marked by time,” he argues. “I love places that are forgotten, like abandoned houses, empty factories, walls, and worn with different types of textures. I don’t have a favorite city, but I believe they all have their charms.”
Before graffiti, Faber expressed his creativity through Legos. “I built and disassembled houses, cars, towers, and anything else I could imagine,” he recalls. Eight years ago, he translated those fine motor skills to spray can art. “From the beginning, I had the influence of graffiti and bombing in my town,” he adds, “but I always tried to find my own way to paint. I did not like copying, so I’d sketch on paper and take my time before I went out to paint something.” Street art led Faber to some wild encounters. “A few days ago in Arequpia, I participated in a meeting of Latin American muralists. We found an abandoned factory that looked like an abandoned town. It was comprised of four-story buildings with wells, alleys, and stairways. It was like a paradise for us! The most exciting thing was that the place is surrounded by a large wall. To enter, we had to squeeze through a small window hole. We went quickly during the day, since the window faces a busy street. The people who passed by and saw us enter as we painted the first and second floor. I saw a police car out there for a while, but they left and we continued painting.” Faber blends street art and graffiti sensibilities to form his own style. Theoretically, graffiti is illegal in essence,” he admits. “The writer leaves his signature or piece where no paint is allowed. The medium lies in the forbidden because it’s a transgression against the parameters of society. Urban art, on the other hand, is not necessarily based on legality. Using different techniques, people can manipulate the environment.” Drawing inspiration from Trujillo, Chicalayo, Arequipa, and other cities, Faber cultivates his own sense of style. “I think my style is influenced by what I feel at certain times and how I perceive reality. I started like everyone else with tagging, but then I got interested in drawing people and objects. I don’t think I’ll stop adding to my own artistic language.” While his style is all his own, Faber relishes the opportunity to collaborate. Through painting with other members of One Style Kings, Faber explains, “You get to see different styles and techniques that help enhance the quality of your work. Reaching agreement on the composition of the wall is a challenge the group must negotiate, so something you much concede in order to achieve agreement.” Complacency isn’t in Faber’s vocabulary; he constantly creates new goals to keep the game fresh. “Professionally, I want to be consistent with my work and to give my best on every job,” he admits. “But first, I would like to be a better person each day because we are all imperfect beings. I love traveling within my country; it helps me grow as an artist and a person. It reaffirms my self esteem and helps me reflect upon and understand different realities.” Faber and other artists like him hope to brighten urban spaces for many years to come. “Street art will go on,” he predicts. “Its evolution will never go away while we can keep it alive.”
Gracias, Faber! For more Faber photos this Friday, take a look at his Flickr. That's all for now! I'm looking forward to a weekend of track meets, art, and a little relaxing. See you Monday!