Tuesday, May 4, 2010

April 2010: KVLR1 in Belfast

Belfast is full of political murals, but dig a little deeper and you'll find KVLR1's pieces all around. Along with a crew of old friends, he decorates Northern Ireland's capital with stencils and freestyle spray. Today, he checks in to talk about Base, stickering, and projects for the future. He writes:
"I'm based in Belfast in Ireland. I've been doing a lot of stuff here lately. We've managed to get a lot of legal walls and have been taking our time over doing pieces collaboratively with a few other artists from here. I have done a little bit of stuff in Dublin and Cork in Ireland and a bit in Manchester, New York and Thailand."
"Where I grew up there was a lot of derelict space and we painted a lot in run down buildings and stuff. I kind of didn't paint on the streets for a long time while I was at college. I studied graphic design and began to get my head around computers and technology. I then worked as a tee shirt designer and started to make a lot of stencils and exhibit stuff. Then I progressed back to doing walls with stencils at first and then more freehand stuff with brushes and spray paint." 

"I enjoy collaborating with others but still do a lot of work solo. We have a bit of a collective between us called Spoom. It's myself, Frizelle, Dogboy, Bad Seed, Redmonk and Horse Goat. We've been painting together for years and get along really well. I do a lot of work with organizations like Spearfish and Trans. We co-organize street art festivals like Base which had over 20 street artist from Ireland, UK and Europe. This gives people the opportunity to paint with others they normally wouldn't meet. "
"Other than my home town, I really enjoyed painting in Thailand. It was a good way to meet the locals. I've done some stuff in bars and things. When I painted a wall or something, they would hook me and my friends up with free food, drink and banter. There's also a cool street festival in Manchester called Eurocultured (pretty much the same thing as Base over here) which was great fun, sunshine, painting, cold beer and live music... a fine combination."

"I don't have any exciting stories really. I was out with a few stickers one day on my bike and a plastic bag got caught in my wheels. I was trying to pull it out whilst coming down a hill and went straight into a lamp post. I didn't hurt myself or anything. When I recomposed myself, I looked to the traffic waiting at a red light and there was a bus load of people pissing themselves laughing at me.. I had to laugh myself."
"We've been doing some posters for a dude in Paris called Urban Hearts. He gets street artists from all over the world to send him paste-up pieces. When he collects enough, he hits them up in various cities across the world. It's cool to have one of your pieces on a street in São Paulo, for example, even if you've never been there. We're also working on our website for the summer: SpoomCollective.com We're going to do a big show / party in Belfast for the launch, which should be a laugh. I'm getting a couple of walls to paint in town with a few heads and should really start gearing up for Base in the summer."

Thanks, KVLR1! For more photos of his work and the rest of Spoom Collective, visit his Flickr.

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