International Street Art Festival Programme

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A Portrait of the Artist : Magda Karol

 

Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

I have been painting since I can remember but last year was the first time I stood in front of a wall with paint in my hand. As I grew up I witnessed the growth of graffiti culture as trains and walls were painted at night. At that time, I wasn’t bold enough to do anything against the law. Today, street art is accepted and there are festivals like Waterford Walls. This event gave me the chance to develop a different field of art.

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

For me place is not significant. Walls and their surroundings should work with the artist trying to add something new to their appearance without trying to change them completely. In this year’s project I will focus on the first lines I saw on the falling plaster on the building which inspired me to draw out into the already existing shape. I do not have a favourite wall, as each one inspires me to create something new.

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

My biggest inspiration is people. I always incorporate human emotions into my art and illustrate them in a metaphorical way. I also have my artistic masters who inspire me and give me new ideas. I love Egon Schiele’s freestyle lines, colour-building like Janny Saville and Sepe, and the incredible guys from Etam Cru who play with the light.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I have been living in Waterford for 13 years and the fact that I’m a foreigner, and I’m slightly ‘exotic’ helps me to take any criticisms on board much easier. I’m mainly creating for my own recognition but the people of Waterford believed in my authenticity, they invested their faith in my art and thus supported me in my further artistic provocations.

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

This year I will be taking part in the Waterford Walls Festival for the second time, and I’m just as excited. This festival once again gives me the opportunity to showcase my art on a large scale and expand my own techniques and this is most exciting for me.

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

I am the last person to judge anything!  I can certainly say that WWF and the people taking part in it are helping me to expand my artistic potential and they are enriching it with a new energy.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street arts role in this? 

WWF has changed the aesthetics of the city. New walls with new colours light up the grey streets of Waterford. The city gets more modern because street art is a form of contemporary art. I am honoured that my work may have an impact on the appearance of this city.

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

Last month I was working elsewhere so I accidentally neglected my own artistic backyard. From September I will be back at full speed as I have ideas ready to illustrate but where and when will you be able to see them? Honestly, as yet, I have no idea.

 

Any shout outs, thanks, links or comments?

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the people who trusted in me and my art and accepted my exotic authenticity. There are so many that I cannot mention them all in a short interview but thank you all very much!!!

Find Magda on Facebook here.

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A Portrait of the Artist : FIVE8

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FIVE EIGHT is a multidisciplinary artist, born and based in Montreal, Quebec. A fine-art painter since 2002, he favours a bold aesthetic over political commentary. His figurative murals and paintings feature dynamic compositions and vivid contrasting colours. FIVE8 has exhibited work in Montreal, Toronto, New York, Miami, and Tel Aviv.

 

Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

I started writing in 2002 in Montreal where the scene is thriving.  Our community is strong and there is an abundance of talent.  I don’t know much about street art, but graffiti got me into painting.  Today I’m mostly focused on mural painting and studio work.

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

Wherever my friends are painting, wherever there’s chill people cool vibes it’s all good.  I’m doing a bit of traveling this summer and I’m looking forward to discovering new places.

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

Lately my biggest source of inspiration has been my experience working with neon lights.  My list of favorite artists is constantly changing.  I’m really liking what Wes21 and Onur are doing together and individually.  Also Bond Tru Luv and Ques VRS are doing very interesting things with letters.  Back home it’s the gods Scan DA and Stare NME who keep innovating and inspiring generations of writers.  My favorite people to collaborate with are currently Earth Crusher and Benny Wilding, both from Montreal as well.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

Growing up and maturing as an artist through Montreal’s graffiti scene I think has been a strong factor in motivating me to paint larger and to always try something new.  

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

I was mostly attracted by the prospect of discovering a country I’ve never been to before, to meet and exchange with the local and international artists, and to explore the culinary hotspots of a variety of regions.

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

Let’s just say they set the bar pretty high with Smug One.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street arts role in this? 

Street art doesn’t have a role to play in anything.  It is practiced by different people for a variety of reasons.  It doesn’t owe society anything. The whole movement comes from graffiti roots, which is a counter culture.  People will use it however it suits their agenda.  It is a vehicle to disseminate a message to the public.  The message can be an artist’s vision or a commercial or political message.

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

This summer I’ll be traveling to several countries to paint.  Estonia, Germany, Ireland, USA.  When I’m home I’m usually building something in the neon shop.  If anyone is interested they can follow my work on Instagram or on my website.

 

Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

Shouts to Earth Crusher, Omen, AShop, Gene Pendon, Siez Swift the General, Nickie Robinson, Neon Family, Gary Cummins, and Louise Flynn for inviting me to Ireland to participate in Waterford Walls 2017.

 

Follow Five8s travels this summer on his Facebook here.

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A Portrait of the Artist : Fintan Magee

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Born in 1985 in Lismore, Australia and encouraged by his parents to draw from a young age, Fintan Magee began painting full time in 2009 and has since established himself as one of the world’s leading figurative street artists.

Magee’s large-scale murals create a visual circus of scattered imagery and styles, drawing inspiration from cartoons, children’s books, nature and architecture. Transporting the viewer beyond mundane routines and expectations into a world of unexpected beauty and chaotic balance, his paintings highlight the extraordinary nature of our everyday existence.

Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting? 

 I grew up in Brisbane Australia. The scene there really revolved heavily around graffiti and train bombing. So I gravitated towards that at a young age. It wasn’t until I was in my mid-twenties that I started to explore different subject matter outside graffiti letters. So I have been painting murals for maybe 6 or 7 years now. 

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

Anywhere that is different and out of my comfort zone. I really enjoy working in the Middle East, Eastern Europe and South America. 


What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

I see value in many art forms so the artists I appreciate are way to numerous to list. I have always really liked artists that engage broader audiences and work outside the traditional gallery system. Michael Leunig is my favourite Australian artist. I also love the old social realists, Rivera, Wood, Siqueiros etc.  


What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I am living in Sydney right now. Unfortunately in the age of the Internet local painting styles have evaporated a bit. I guess my environment affects my subject matter more than my technique. 


We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

My father grew up in Derry and most of my extended family is in Ireland so I like to get back when I can. 

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

I am still new to the project and I haven’t visited Waterford in person but it looks like you have some amazing work in a small city. 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street art’s role in this? 

Street artists are often unwitting agents in gentrification projects so I am cautious when commenting or embracing themes like this. I am all for renewal but I just hope that it is economically inclusive. 

8. Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

I have a solo show in Paris with Gallerie Mathgoth in September. On top of that I am working on a bunch of public art projects in Europe, North America and a couple of counties in the Middle East. 

9. Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

 Follow me at:

 Instagram: @fintan_magee

Facebook: facebook.com/fintanmageeart

Website: www.fintanmagee.com

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A Portrait of the Artist : Kinmx

We catch up with Kathrina Rupit aka KINMX and talk painting, inspiration and Waterford Walls.

 

 

KINMX

 

Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

I started with graffiti, just tagging my name like a sign of “I’m here in this crowded city in North Mexico!”  but the scene wasn’t very artistic or peaceful, so I stepped back from my neighbourhood and started choosing more artistic movements because I had always loved painting. I started making paste-ups and stickers so I sneaked into a screen printing lab, to produce thousands of stickers to give away and paste up. I keep changing my taste and tools but over all these years I haven’t changed much, just added new materials and techniques to the thing I always love: painting.

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

I enjoy all them so much that I couldn’t pick just one.

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

For me life is the biggest source as I’m always in the mood to get inspired. I find inspiration everyday; it can be a colour in a flower just crossing the street, pub tiles with antique patterns, a smile, or a commission that pushes me to go out of my comfort zone. Everything can have potential.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I live in Dublin and it definitely influences my artwork and colours.

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017. What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

I love the vibe of the festival, the people are amazing and I look forward to meeting them again, the whole idea of the project is mind blowing for me. As there isn’t any other project like this in Ireland, I feel that we are all making history here.

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

They really take the time to curate the artwork, the artist and the walls, so artists from all over the world get the wall that will best suit their work.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street art’s role in this?

I have seen the impact of street art in Wynwood in Miami or Lodz in Poland, for example, areas which have been transformed into cultural areas, bringing tourists to walk through the murals which makes it easier to develop and create projects where they bring many artists and transform those grey buildings into pieces of art, giving back life to the city and putting the city on the map for their unique artwork.

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

At present I am painting a mural in Dallas and last week I was painting in Thessaloniki, Greece, at “SAF” Street Art Festival, a fusion of painting and music with international and local artists. You can check out all these projects on my social media, I’m always sharing the links where you can find the full story of each project. Now I can’t wait to come back to Waterford!

 

Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

Big thanks to everybody who is taking part –  all organizers, curators, volunteers, art lovers, sponsors , spectators, journalists, bloggers, fans, artists, Instagramers and to everybody who is reading this article!

You can keep up to date with Kinmx buy following her on Facebook here.

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A Portrait of the Artist : birdO

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Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

In Canada I was lucky enough to get introduced to graffiti culture through the freight scene. I used to spend hours/days/weeks bumming around the yard watching trains pull in from all over North America. The way an artist’s work vagabonds it’s way around the continent is priceless. 

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

I’m not saying this to suck up but Waterford was definitely a great experience. An amazing time is certainly had when you have Viking Crystal Magic behind you.

However, my favourite place to paint so far is Los Angeles. It’s also pretty magical but sunny every damn day!

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

I actually like to look through graphic design articles. The level of talent from writers and muralists is out of this world these days. I’m constantly scratching my head as to how good modern painters are. For inspiration I tend to look backwards though. Can’t go wrong with Rene Magritte. Or a Dr Seuss book.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I’m based in Toronto, Canada. I’d say the city has most affected my approach. You’ve got to have a thick skin in Toronto and it doesn’t hurt to be comfortable as a lone wolf. I’ve learned the beautiful art of buckling down and getting stuff done here.

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

Having made a whirlwind trip to Waterford last year I couldn’t help but want to come back. It is very easy to make great friends there. I very much look forward to getting back to see my wonderful people.

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

With a roster that includes the likes of Fintan Magee and big Smug One the artistic standard is certainly world class. Some kats to definitely look (way) up to.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street arts role in this? 

I’d rather suggest it is the individuals role/responsibility. As long as artists are committed to evolution and integrity the culture as a whole will sort itself out. Graffiti invented this thing for us. Street art pivoted and the large scale muralists are out there blowing minds. I reckon whether you’re throwing up a scratch fill in a tunnel or on a hundred foot swing stage with 50 cans if you care about what you’re doing this whole thing is moving in the right direction.

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

The world unfortunately lost a very special person recently. He was from Toronto and we are currently working towards putting together a worthy tribute in his hometown. It’s in the early stages but I’m looking forward to helping honour his legacy.

 

Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

As mentioned the calibre of talent globally is off the charts. Inspiration is around every corner and I’d simply say thanks to everyone out there doing their damn thing with passion.  

To keep up to date with birdO follow him here on Instagram.

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A Portrait of the Artist : NOVICE

We sit down with artist and illustrator , Jess Tobin, aka NOVICE about her journey and inspirations in life.

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Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

I got into street art through youth work, some young people I was working with wanted to try it out, I was hooked when I first tried it. After I started trying out spray paint I was given a number of great opportunities by Allcity in Dublin & Evolve urban art and went from there.I wasn’t involved in the scene growing up, I only got into street art about 4 years ago or so.

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

Any nice big wall at a spot where I can take my time and chill out while painting. The Bernard Shaw is good. I painted at South13 in Belfast with Friz recently, that was an amazing place!

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

My biggest source of inspiration are faces, trying to capture a strong expression. Fashion & colour have a big influence too. I’m always inspired by other artists work too, I have so many favourites artists for many different reasons, some are Lebas, Aches, Friz and the MSO lads. International artists who I admire are Etam Cru, Funskull and Smug and that’s just to name a few off the top of my head. 

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I live in Dublin, it has provided me with some nice opportunities to paint and I do have a soft spot for it, but I couldn’t say how it has affected my style or technique. 

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

I’m excited to be part of it again. It looked like a brilliant event so I wanted to be part of it. Then after I was blown away by it last year so I wanted to come back in 2017 with bells on! This is going to sound cheesy but the vibe, the people, staff and volunteers made it such a great event. Getting to meet, and see amazing artists in action puts the icing on the cake. 

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

20 out of 10!

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street arts role in this? 

I guess we have the potential to breathe new life in to buildings and areas, in an exciting and creative way. 

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

This week I’m delighted to be taking part in All Together Human . The Blind elephant Illustration Collective, of which I am 1 have our Roald Dahl tribute illustrations showing at the Mill Theatre this weekend. I have illustrations currently on display in Pot Bellied pig Dublin alongside my fiance’s work. I guess a wedding is a big project 😀

I have more fun collaborations are on the cards, I love to collaborate with other artists, it’s great fun and I get to learn from them. 

 

Any shout outs, thanks, links or comments?

Shout outs to the Waterford Walls peeps for having me back! I couldn’t possibly do any other shout outs because I’d be afraid I’d leave some one out. I’m really grateful for all of the support and great opportunities that I’ve gotten, it’s brilliant. 

Find Novice on Twitter and keep up to date with her work.

 

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A Portrait of the Artist : RASK

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Tell us how you first got into street art, what was the scene like where you grew up and how many years have you been painting?

I first picked up on graffiti writing when Hip Hop came to Europe in the mid 80s. I had always doodled as a kid so writing on walls instantly appealed to me. I did my first piece in 1987, late at night and when I went to see it the next day was instantly hooked. There was a small and vibrant scene in my hometown, which has continued solidly since the 80’s.

 

What has been your favourite place to paint and why?

I’ve painted so many places it’s hard to pick one. Painting New York the first time was very surreal. Meeting some of the people who were involved with the graffiti culture from the beginning was very inspiring. I really love Miami for art Basel and Copenhagen is probably my favourite European city to visit.

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work? Do you have any favourite writers or artists? 

I’m inspired by so many people for many different reasons. My biggest inspiration comes from those closest to me. I’m involved with a crew called fours, which in my opinion is a bunch of super serious artist who really encourage and push each other.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style, medium or technique in any way?

I have always lived in Drogheda but I’m very fortunate to travel a lot and this has definitely helped me to grow as an artist and learn different things from every place I visit. At home I have an amazing location on the banks of the river Boyne. I find it really therapeutic to paint there amongst nature.

 

We’re very excited about having you at Waterford Walls 2017, What attracted you to the project? And what are you most looking forward to?

Waterford walls just oozes good vibes, I really respect people who decide to do something positive for their city. Have a dream and make it come true. The planet needs more people who think this way . I’m looking forward to soaking up the atmosphere and watching some of the serious talent on show

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard? 

I think Waterford Walls has definitely grown every year. There is a great mix of home-grown and international talent across a range of different styles. This year is definitely a heavy weight lineup.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street arts role in this? 

I think by its very nature, applying paint to buildings is a transformation. I firmly believe adding colour to the environment stimulates a reaction in people. While some people may not understand the work they will react to colours.

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for? 

I’ve been pretty busy this year already. Later this summer I will travel to Denmark, Holland and the UK To paint at events and hopefully I will make it back to Miami in December for art Basel. I also have my own event in September where I will host about 40 artists to paint a bunch of walls in Drogheda.

 

Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

Shout outs to everyone who has joined me along the way on this crazy journey. Especially my friends and crew mates. I never realised when I began scribbling in walls as a kid where it would take me. Follow your dreams and always dream in colour!

 

To keep up to date with RASK  you can follow him on Facebook here or find out more about Bridge Jam Drogheda here. 

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Shout Out Wall Community Event

Shout-out

We had a very exciting event for anyone & everyone to take part in! The Waterford Walls ShoutOut Wall!! Many people joined us on Sun 11th June at New St. Gardens & watched the magic happen! A massive THANK YOU to all who got involved! As a result we raised a wonderful €320!

For a small donation of €5 or €10 many became immortalised in a special work of art. One of Ireland’s top street artists, Rask, painted a vibrant new piece in the city made entirely of contributors names and messages. Many people surprised their friends, children, parents, dogs and had their names join the fun! This new work could only have happened with the participation of the wonderful people of the community.

Donations were accepted through PayPal or through The Parlour Vintage Tea Rooms, 2 George’s Street Waterford.

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A Portrait of the Artist : Caoilfhionn Hanton

We sit down with Waterford artist and powerhouse of creativity Caoilfhionn Hanton for our latest profile of the artist.

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Tell us how you first got into street art?

I first pursued a debut in this very foreign world during the New Street Gardens Project, headed by Edel. I find street art is much more refreshing for me than the standard art gallery. I started taking my craft seriously in transition year. Since posting my work online I have gained myself a solid reputation. Also I gained priceless work experience from the brilliant Dublin artist Steve Kemp in stencil cutting and spray paint. I’ve been in love with urban art ever since.

 

What’s been your favourite place to paint?

The outside, on a warm, sunny day. I’ve been lucky that whilst I was painting for Waterford Walls, the Harley Davidson wall in Ozier Park and at The Bernard Shaw for International Woman’s Day, I was mostly blessed with lovely weather

 

What is your biggest source of inspiration in your work?

Instagram is essential for providing #vibes. I follow/stalk a few drag queens who use their faces as the canvas, I listen to music and throwback music videos and I obsess over boxsets and cinema. I’m obsessed with rap/ urban culture as those who know of my online presence or in person would guess. Gimme hip hop from every era, it’s all iconic and good.

 

What city do you live in now? Has this affected your style?

I’ve only ever lived in Waterford but I definitely think this has influenced my style.

Waterford is a unique, historical county and an underdog. I think youth culture here is very prominent and the city is more exciting than it’s been in years. It’s metropolitan in its own way. Waterford Walls has transformed the city and created a dialogue between cultures and generations, and generally makes the city look cooler and distils pride in all of us.

 

What attracted you to Waterford Walls, and what are you most looking forward to?

I was most attracted by the liberation of using our city’s actual walls. Being able to walk past pieces you love is incredible, and makes the city a meandering art gallery. I love the tourists looking and taking pictures. I can’t wait as I’ve fine-tuned my influences and have ideas lots of ideas in mind.

 

How would you rate Waterford Walls in terms of artistic quality standard?

I would rate the city as a phenomenal spot for culture. A huge chunk of the city’s creative façade is thanks to Waterford Walls. The work is incredible and rivals Dublin in cultural #fleekiness.

 

The theme of Waterford Walls 2017 is “Renewal & Regeneration”. What do you see as being street art’s role in this?

“Renewal and Regeneration” captures how WW benefits the city. It gives more value to pieces in my opinion, as there is history behind every wall, as opposed to the cold sterility of art galleries. I admire those also, but the interaction and connection between people and these Walls is something else. It’s a renewal and regeneration of people’s admiration of their city.

 

Do you have any projects, trips or shows coming up that we can look out for?

I’m living the adult life and working full time this summer, but buying essential art investments with my new-found financial independence. I’ve been practising illustration styles and trying to find what types I like the most. I’m laying low at the moment but expect an iconic comeback haha

 

Any shoutouts, thanks, links or comments?

Thanks to my fam, my supporters, and Waterford Walls. Thanks to all the internet friends who have showed me really cool things that still influence me today and last but not least, thank you Scottish Twitter for providing the best laughs of this year so far.