There were so many great moments during my Barcelona trip, both in and
outside of the festival: meeting so many like-minded and talented people,
seeing amazing art, etc. All this pales in comparison to the messianic glory
of Pure Evil’s shorts, worn proudly while painting Guernica
How and when did you start making stencils?
I went to Paris many years ago and spotted some really nice stencil work and
street art. At the time there was almost nothing comparable on the streets
of Dublin. I started making stencils four or five years ago. These stencils
were mostly A3 or A4 in size. My chosen material for those stencils was
laminated prints, or overhead projector transparencies. More recently I have
been using acetate as this material is available in larger sizes.
What was your first stencil?
OK so this is a bit embarrassing, my first stencil was of George Bush. I did
it as a test run to try different painting techniques. It never made the
streets. It had text from Bill Hicks accompanying it.
Why in the streets?
Honestly I am not sure why. There are many reasons. For example; mischief,
vanity, bravado, the need to convey a message, are all honest valid reasons.
Depending on the day or the work I am doing, I might give a different
One thing I know, for me, it is a compulsion. I am always about to give up
doing illegal work, but still find myself out at night, working away,
embellishing the city.
Can you describe your work briefly?
I am most happy with my work when it has a sense of mischief, when it forces
the unexpected passer by to do a double take and wonder what the work is about.
I primarily use stencils, paste ups and occasionally stickers. I don't take my
painting too seriously, and am not aiming to build an artistic career from
What message, if any, are you trying to convey?
I am not trying to convey a single particular message. I would say my work
reflects my personality to some degree. If an issue bugs me, or inspires me,
I might make a paste up or stencil to address it. Some of my pieces might not
convey a message, and simply be pretty pictures. I do like to confuse and
amuse in my work, to force people to think when they see a piece. I like my
stuff to be a bit disconcerting.
What or Who are your main sources of inspiration?
I am primarily inspired by my friends and by events that take place. I don’t
generally look to people in the street art scene for inspiration. I am aware
of them and their work as reference, and they certainly influence my
techniques. I try as much as possible to do my own thing.
Who did you enjoy working with the most at Difusor?
There’s no one person that I could single out. Throughout my Barcelona trip
I painted with a bunch of cool people, Lints, Ripo, Sinboy, Fremantle,
Silencio, Ludzik, Xpome and Pure Evil were just some of the people I painted and
hung out with over the festival.
What are you plans for the future?
I am involved in organizing a big urban sports and graffiti jam in Dublin on
the 28th of July. It’s called the Kings of Concrete. There will be plenty of
great artists from Ireland the UK, Poland, Denmark and the USA there.
Besides that I am hoping to paint in London this year with Lints. After that I
have no plans.
If you could do anything in any spot, what would you do and where?
When we were in Barcelona, the spot that I would have loved to hit was the
huge white curved wall on the Macba building. I would like to have painted or
pasted up a 50 foot version of my bondage girl. She would have loved the
Have you ever had any trouble with the police?
I have had my fair share of attention from the police… once in the very
recent past. Most of the time I have managed to blag or run my way out of
trouble… but there was this one time…..
How easy is it to paint in your city, Dublin?
It’s not that easy to paint in Dublin. There’s not much public tolerance for
it and the police don’t tolerate it either.
Having said all that, there are a lot more legal graffiti jams taking place
across Ireland. Dublin City Council are trying to embrace the culture, and
have sponsored many graffiti related events. The sense of irony is lost on
nobody that the buffer’s employers are also promoting graffiti.
What do you thing of the "zero tolerance" regarding street art in cities like
Barcelona or New York?
First of all, I don’t believe in absolutes. Zero is a very small number. No
laws should be absolutist.
Secondly, Barcelona is well renowned for its street art. The public there
seem quite appreciative of it. It has been a central meeting point for
international artist and I believe it was good for tourism. The city looks
brighter and more interesting as a result of this activity.
If zero tolerance means grey blank walls in place of beautiful paintings,
the answer is obvious. One reason the standard of street art is so high in
Barcelona is that there has been a relaxed view of street art. Artists took
their time to do nice pieces. The danger is that these beautiful pieces will
be replaced by half assed throw ups and tags, as people look over their
shoulder and paint. Nobody wants that.
pi at difusor
pi in Dublin