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KNOCK KNOCK...

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Welcome home, Knock knock magazine profiles street level emerging and established Australian and international creatives doing their thing, and doing it well.

Created by Tom Groves Photos courtesy of the artists. Front cover image by Pseudoze. Inside cover image by Eleven. Additional photography by Tom Groves. Under no circumstaces may any of the images in this magazine be copied without permission. Knock Knock Š Tom Groves 2011

KNOCK KNOCK...

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Contents

Ears

Ghstie

Mitchell Cumming

Bhats

Ha-Ha (Regan Tamanui)

Sam Andrews/ S-701A

Eleven

Issac Shelley

Shida

Georg Whelan

Pseudoze

Pahnl

Smoat

Will Coles

Makatron

Sokei/Kois

Max Berry

Vars One

Raptor Blood

Ruskidd

Houl

Mr Good Thanks

Toggles

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Ears

How would you describe your artistic practice? I am basically a painter, but i enjoy working with audio, and found materials for other facets of my creative work. My paintings are abstracted portraits investigating colour and the human form. Lately i am looking at constructed layers of the material world that contain us.

Do you have any formal education in art? Some.. I spent a year at NAS. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Discovering new artists that have made ‘new’ feeling images and pushed their imagination into traditional painting to extend the culture of painting.

What motivates you to produce your work? Music producers who do the same for sound, and manage to experiment within the realms Life, art, music.. people, the city. nature.. of accessibility and make a bridge between How long have you been producing work new ideas and digest-able media. and how did you get started? Do you think living in Australia has an I have been taking my practice seriously for influence on your art? about 3 years. Somewhat, but with the internet and air What is the best thing about working on travel, the work is getting smaller, so global the street? influences are big. Its free. Free for the public to view and from Where do you see yourself in 5 years? creative restrictions or censorship. Its is Hopefully living in a treehouse with my outside the institution and has no limitations beautiful lady, sipping damiana tea and conceptually or aesthetically. painting on the porch with my trusty What is the worst thing about working on dingo healer nearby. the street? The cops.

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I’m working on some musical projects, one called ‘flight recorder’ which is myself and a mate ‘Jack Prest’ composing experimental beats, we are doing a single release of 10

copies of a vinyl record. very limited edition run, with hand made covers as a gallery event. I’ll also be doing a solo show at Harrison galleries in August next year.

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Mitchell Cumming

How would you describe your artistic practice? Sporadic? Responsive? Hesitant? What motivates you to produce art? A majority of the work I produce starts out as a response to something, usually something related to the artworld in some way. That’s whats interesting to me about making work, its potential as this dialogue or exchange. Its exciting to think that you can interact directly with ideas other artists might have been putting forward 20, 50, 100 years ago, or even something that was done last week. You can pick up on something and respond. It was exciting to realise that the history of art is really open to change and flux and develops in this way. How long have you been making art and how did you get started? I’d never had a huge interest in the arts when I was at high school. I studied an academicheavy mix, and when Uni enrollment time came I put my name down for the suitably clinical field of Psychology.

Graphic Design degree at COFA in 2007. At that point I saw design as a compromise between academia and creativity, but as I moved through the course I felt limited. What I really wanted was something that allowed for more contemplation and exploration. Less fixed terms or ends maybe. So I transferred again to a Fine Arts course at SCA which is where I am now. A drawing-heavy practice has given way to a more project-based way of working. Does living and working in Sydney have an effect on your artmaking? I’m interested in the more general conditions of producing art in Australia definitely. Ours is a very strange position culturally. Recently I have been reading a lot of books by/about Ian Burn, and it has really intensified my awareness of that fact. I don’t know if Sydney has had any specific effect, having never lived anywhere else. I’m glad for the variety of sources I have found here though. You just pick up select things along the way and that inevitably shapes your outlook.

I think somewhere during my gap year though I started to become more generally interested in the visual arts and I switched over to a

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Do you have any formal education in art? I’m currently half way through a BFA at Sydney College of the Arts. Majoring in painting but barely touching the stuff.

More specifically on the painting side of things:

One of the benefits of the course is that it really allowed me to step back and not see art making as a process of churning out work and then assigning meaning to it.

Daan Van Golden - http://www. greenenaftaligallery.com/artist/Daan-vanGolden

A majority of my studio practice has been used for research really.

Raoul De Keyser - http://www.zeno-x.com/ artists/raoul_de_keyser.htm

R.H. Quaytman - http://www. contemporaryartdaily.com/2011/06/venice-rh-quaytman-at-the-central-pavilion/

What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I’m influenced mostly by those people who have a real commitment to their field of interest, whatever that might be. Hyper awareness is attractive to me. People who try to see things as more than their surface sheen.

Lisa Williamson - http://lisawilliamsonart. blogspot.com/

Currently: Ian Burn - for his writing and broader cultural interests as much as for his specific artistic output.

What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I’m currently working for AFAAAR (Association for the Facilitation of Access to Art for Australian Residents). Information about AFAAAR projects hopefully coming soon.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Burrowing a little hole into a university department and setting up shop? As long as I have access to good books and a few interesting people I’ll be more than happy

Peter Tyndall - his blog ( http://blogos-haha.blogspot.com/ ) is such an incredibly interesting resource, constantly updated with a good balance of cynicism and insight. Frank Gonzalez-Crussi - Physician turned writer with a number of amazing books that examine everything from medicine to Norse Mythology. (Notes of an Anatomist is a particular favourite)

A general collection of recent projects can be found at: http://cargocollective.com/mitchelcumming Working shots/sketches/notes can be found at http://www.flickr.com/photos/chicken_dinners/

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HA-HA (Regan Tamanui)

How would you describe your artistic practice? My art practice is all about using stencils to tell a story Why do stencils, what attracts you to them rather than traditional brush painting? I use to be a painter in oils but nothing really sold then i started to incorporate stenciling in the work until i got rid of the oil paints & stuck with stencils. What attracts me to stencils is the quickness of the spraying on the streets. You can cut out an image from card board & get it up all over the city What motivates you to make art, both for the gallery and on the street? Is the motivation the same for both? My main motivation to make art is to pay all my stink’n bills, i love making stencils i consider it as part of my everyday live , i also want 2 do a bit of travelling & pursueing my hobby of ufo spotting & becoming a cult leader that worships the internet as god How long have you been making stencils and how did you get started? I’ve been making stencils since the start of 2002, i use to see a lot of psalm stencils

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around 2000 when i started seeing psalm stencils everywhere so in 2002 i thought i’d give it go. Psalm is the Australian godfather of street art so yeah thats how i got started stencilling as well as hanging out with graffiti writers. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Hopefully living overseas in the evil empire USA, and im thinking it would be cool to research UFO’s . What is the best thing about working on the street? Getting up as much as you can What is the worst thing about working on the street? Getting chased (when doing illegal stuff) & working in areas that stink of urine. Do you prefer making work in you studio or on public walls? On public walls its art that everyone can view. Do you have any formal education in art? None, i believe that education is to be self taught.

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What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I like researching subject matter such as Ned Kelly for example & working on themes for exhibitions

What is your most memorable career moment thus far in being an artist? The space invaders exhibition opening at the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra

You are a conspiracy theorist right? Tell us more about what to watch out for! OK, chemicals in the sky designed for geo-engineering & atmospheric modification (so they say) the main cause is to cull the human race, 9/11 totally an inside job , there are over 30,000 ufo sightings around the world every month.

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I have an exhibition in auckland in October called ‘Personal heroes’ at Orex gallery just working on that at the moment

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Eleven

How would you describe your artistic practice? Well i’m always dropping in and out of working habits. I go from my busy days to my slow days and they consist of
illustrations to designs and various other creative applications. I’m in it for the fun. I never plan out or stress the idea
of a work so much, conceptual works aren’t very becoming of me. I usually grab a blank canvas of any kind and just
let my mind go to work to create some kind of fluid piece of artwork. There’s never any real structure towards how
I go about a work, it just seems to finish itself and i quite like it that way. What motivates you to produce art/ photograph? Often it’s the atmosphere i’m surrounded by! You know the type of feeling you get when you’re just in that art-making
setting, there’s no limitations to your creativity and you have the world in the palm of your hands! THAT’S THE FEELING!
I get it when there’s good weather. Not particularly a nice sunny day, but the type of weather that just feels good to art.

In terms of photography, i’m always waiting for those ‘moments’. I can go out one day psyched and ready to

take amazing
photos and end up with a days worth of boring photos. On the other hand i may get that one chance to take that one
photo, the one that after the entire day, is the only shot i’ll remember. Those are the photos that motivate me to be out with
my camera everyday, observing and waiting for that one ‘moment’. How long have you been making art/ taking photographs and how did you get started? 
I’ve been arting for about 2 years now ? I started in my final years of high school, a bunch of my friends were in to the graffiti
scene and they’d brag on about missions and things they had done the night before. It drew me in instantly and ignited my
competitive nature. A sort of “anything you can do, i can do better” mantra. What makes working in the street appealing for you? It’s different. It’s a new atmosphere, a new context and different risks. The worst thing that can happen to you in your studio
is perhaps your easel falls and your work is ruined; the street is less merciful. Not to say the dangers are what appeal to me.
It’s

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more about just working on something unconventional and larger scale. Making your mark on society is another intriguing
feature to street work. You’re creating a layer of history on the wall, or a door, or a bin and it’s something that stands alone as
a symbol of your, i suppose, circumvention and existence. Do you have any formal education in art, and or photography?
 I scribbled pictures on paper as a kid, but other than that i’ve been teaching myself. i have a knack for the whole “monkey see,
monkey do” ideal. I’ve gotten pointers along the way and i did art as a subject for high school, but i’ve never really had a teacher
who i turned to for advice or guidance. I quite liked working and finding things out on my own.

I studied photography in high school for 2 years maybe? At the time i didn’t care much for it and only know am i slowly dissecting
those vital parts of information i should’ve been listneing closer to. Once again i found my own way to get the camera to do the things
i wanted it to do. I meet photographers all the time and i learn something new just by talking to them and watching them shoot.
I suppose you can’t learn to observe, it’s something you really do have to teach yourself.

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What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I try to find inspiration in everything. I’m easily affected by the weather and my immediate surroundings. Music plays a big part in my 
creative process too. Sometimes i won’t even start a work until i find a good song to jam along too. I work very spontaneously and i
feel that particular types of music help me translate thought to image easier or more fluidly.
 Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Hopefully in a flying car. In all seriousness though, i’m not sure. I hate to plan too far ahead into the future, i always end up disappointing
myself, or just forgetting. Hopefully, i’m doing something i love to do, whether it be art, photography, eating good food or sleeping a decent 
amount of hours, as long as i’m still smiling, i couldn’t care less whether or not my car can fly.

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? At the moment i’m working on art pieces for an upcoming Melbourne group show. I’m working smaller than usual, but i’m trying out new techniques
that i’ve been leaning towards lately. I’ve been busily snapping away day by day of things i find

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interesting, hopefully releasing a small zine of my
favorite shots up to date. Summer is creeping closer and i’m planning out all the sun-related activities i can participate in, although i’ll end up staying indoors
working on artworks all summer anyway, it’s the thought that counts.

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Shida

How would you describe your artistic practice? I try to work on as many platforms as possible. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I’ve been drawing all my life but started street art in 2004. What is the best thing about working on the street? The scale, freedom and ability to broadcast yourself. What is the worst thing about working on the street? Getting rolled and the cops, as well as all the conservatives especially in QLD. You would think I would have gotten over it by now, but sometimes when I’ve been working on a wall for days and the only thing anyone has to say is “Do you have permission?” or “are you allowed to do that?” I really have to fight my urge to smack them. :) Do you have any formal education in art? I tried art school but ended up dropping out. I like to think I have a really good Idea of the direction my art is going and what I would like to do, having someone preach to me about “finding my style” just pissed me of.

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What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I’m mostly influenced by street art and graffiti as well as artist like Roger Dean and Frank Frazetta. Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? The Australian street art community has really influenced me, guys like Lister, Sync, Phibs and Reka have greatly influenced my style since I started. I think my art is uniquely Australian and I try to represent my home in my work. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Well I know what I would like to be doing but it all depends on how things go. I have big aspirations. It seems a lot of serious Australian ‘low brow’ artists at some stage move to Melbourne, what made you want to relocate there? I was only in melbourne for a couple of months but its definitely a mecca for street art in Australia. I love it but I’m still undecided on where to live.

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? My show “Finding Paradise” opens on the Gold Coast on the 8th of october and then I will be a part of the Outpost Project in Sydney in November. After that I’m embarknig on my 2012 World tour. :)

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Pseudoze

How would you describe your photography practice? I often find my practice pushes me to capture moments people would otherwise never see. Most often I find myself alone on the streets or trainlines at night trying to capture an atmosphere or document an artwork. Pushing the boundaries of the law keeps photography interesting. Capturing spontaneous street scenes during the day are a bit more nerve-racking so I’ve migrated to the night. What motivates you to take photos? Photography provides me an escape from the stresses of life, and to explore a concept or mood which I can communicate to my friends or online communities. How long have you been taking photographs and how did you get started? My family is full of keen amateur photographers so simply being surrounded with equipment has meant ever since a very young teenager, making skate films and photographing my area became a fulfilling pastime. Traveling and catching new spots for the sake of photography became a productive way of seeing the world and helps fulfill my sense of adventure.

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What makes working in the street appealing for you? The street is a raw and exciting place of constant change, which through the eyes of a writer or street artist has to be captured. The uncertain and often illegal nature of my street based approach keeps you pushing boundaries of the art. Do you have any formal education in art, and or photography? My photography teacher in high school once told me “all the technical ability in the world will never surpass a creative eye”. It is true that although I have studied art and photography all the way through to university, only through experimentation on the street can you really learn. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Catching the train to the city every day is a great influence. Seeing who is up, who is doing something new, and who has beef with who keeps the whole game exciting. It allows you time to scheme up your next mission, whether it be photographic or my own piece or paste-up. Ill also leave a good magazine/ book shop inspired to capture or create something.

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After looking at some of your photographs, it seems you get yourself into some pretty wild situations, got any cool stories? Over the years a lot of crazy shit has occurred while trying to photograph some risky spots. When I was a bit younger, me and a mate had been bombing a specific area heavily until it was so redhot, on a mission to photograph some of it lead to us being ambushed by 2 motorway security guards. They held us down until the police rocked up. They were almost certain what we wrote. After they split us up and interrogated us, the whole “we are just art students trying to do a photography assignment” excuse worked. All we copped was a $50 fine for being on a trainline. Lucky. What would you like to be doing in 5 years time? I have almost graduated university doing Architecture but my real love is in graphic design based on street culture. Within 5 years time I would love to have melded these 3 elements into something publishable as well as working for some street-based brands.

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Uni is taking up far too much of my time recently but it also forces constant creative development. I have applied this to a few projects including an interesting architectural project to be held at Fraser’s Studios later this month called One:One. Keeping on top of the buff is also a constant effort so making time to get busy on the trainlines and streets is a must. A lot of it can be seen on these websites: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pseudoze http://designwon.carbonmade.com/ http://design1.carbonmade.com/ http://streetsteez.carbonmade.com/ documents a single project

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Smoat

How would you describe your works? All round I guess, from painting on the tracks and on the street, to brush and acrylic on females, to felt tip on paper. I’m always open for new media’s yet I’ll always favor spray paint. You’ll never find a media that can be used for so much. Your so free, unlike with pen on paper where the movements of your lines come from your hand and wrist, with spray paint your movements come from your body, you can dance around however the f*ck you like. What motivates you to produce your work? Other writers more than anything, seeing other peoples shit keeps you motivated and interested. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? Probably close to 4 years now. A teacher at my high school used to tell stories of some ruthless shit he used to do when he used to paint, and those stories just built upon an interest that I was already starting to get into. However I get sick of my letters and change my word a lot, which is a pretty big set back every time.

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What is the best thing about working on the street? The freedom. There’s no one standing over your shoulder telling you what to do or where to do it. Can just do whatever you please. What is the worst thing about working on the street? There are a few set backs, one of the major bummer’s would be the authorities, but there not as smart as they act. My worst would be the buff, you can go to such extremes like climbing 10 stories of scaffolding, and have it painted over the next day, but that’s life I guess. Do you have any formal education in art? No not yet, soon though. Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? In a way yes, Australia’s got a dope variety of artists, and our way of life is pretty damn easy. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Probably somewhere on the other side of the world painting shit I shouldn’t be painting.

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Makatron

How would you describe your artistic practice? My art practice is broken down into walls/ murals, canvas work, some illustration for various design studios, and less than 5% Graphic Design, which is more or less the order which I like things. I also try to do some kind of youth work or mentoring stuff every month, not for the money, more I feel its important to do and I would have benefited from this type of thing growing up. The mediums I use for walls are acrylic paint to buff or brush on, combined with aerosol, similarly with canvas ,its usually mixed media, with parts messy and parts refined.

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? Since kindergarten really, my house was fairly creative and wild, we drew all over the walls, and I always had an interest in art class in school, after high school I studied illustration, then fine art in New York for a few years, I ended up living there about 4 years from 20 years old. but became a part of Everfresh when I moved to Melbourne which helps in many ways, such as techniques, professionalism, sharing materials and equipment, sharing jobs or art shows, or for example if I needed help with a website problem I can ask a few people.

What motivates you to produce your work? Good question, I have always had a need to create, so it’s like feeding an urge when you are hungry or horny, or I play a little bit of music, and it must be the same for people that need to jam. The last 3 or 4 years its been a full time job, and i generally have the pedal down trying to make the most of each day. I also feed from other people, and like to collaborate and see others doing well which motivates me to keep evolving and generating.

What is the best thing about working on the street? my favourite thing about illegal street stuff is the quiet in-between moments that are almost surreal, when you are on a rooftop or in an abandoned warehouse, painting and concentrating so much, that you forget where you are. It can be very peaceful . Another great aspect is meeting other people, generally when you are doing legal works.

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What is the worst thing about working on the street? Well of course no one wants to get busted

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doing illegal things , i’ve had a number of runs in with authorities but nothing too major thankfully, The worst thing about legal things is when every random person wants to give their opinion or understand what you will paint,it can be good to chat to randoms but also draining.

maybe in a subconscious way with dots or seeing inside animals, but I appreciate it. Most of my life has been in urban cities, I have worked in 10 cities as a bike messenger and been around the world 6 or 7 times, depending how you count... so I take influence from a lot of places. Australia generally doesn’t have major problems in our society or economy , like many other countries, and I think many 3rd countries that have liberated societies like South America, especially Brazil, produce art from their hearts in a way we don’t here, which is just my opinion, but I appreciate it.

Do you have any formal education in art? 2 years of fine art in NY, and 2 years of illustration / graphics or visual communication in Australia. NY was a scholarship not for art, but athletic and academic combined, but I just studied Art, and the Graphics helped motivate and teach me about computers, You recently exhibited work as a part of which was my main goal. To be able to the Everfresh Crew in the NGV, how was present things somewhat professionally and quickly online or PDF’s or whatever is needed. it moving from a private studio into a public domain? What things influence you in your Well it was the closest thing we will ever have creative endeavors? to having an open studio, I personally didn’t I take influences from so many sources, work in their much as I like to have all my common themes are animals, especially equipment right there so when I am wanting large textured lumpy ones, nature especially something I don’t have to look for it, and it florals, feathers and cactus, women and their wasn’t practical to do that in there, it definitely forms, especially lips and body curves, some brought in an audience that wouldn’t know us machine like things or technology..... and by being in Fed Square, and that month was combinations of these things. a lot of random emails from people which is good. We didn’t have too much time to Do you think living in Australia has an prepare for that show, and were unsure about influence on your art? many things due to it being the 1st one, but Absolutely, I just recently was painting walls we moved most of the studio down there, up in Alice Springs, I have never been near filled the walls with old work and collages, there, but it was a good experience. I don’t which cost nothing, and with the budget we really take influence from Aboriginal art,

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I just had my 2nd solo show in Fed Square, at No Vacancy Gallery. It was stressful and I don’t like the ‘center of attention’ part of the opening, but it was worthwhile, I am putting photos of these canvases and prints online soon.

bought a van and made an art piece from it, kinda like a 14 year olds graffiti fantasy... but its very useful now. What’s next for Everfresh? Well the biggest thing is the cockatoo island Outpost event.... we are honoured to be a part of that, Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Well i’d like to live overseas again, maybe Brazil, like Floripa or Sao Paulo..... or maybe a euro city like berlin again or Amsterdam, I think it would be good for me to start again somewhere, maybe in a year from now. it will be hard as pretty much everything that is paid comes from word of mouth.

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Thanks for having me...

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Max Berry

How would you describe your artistic practice? I guess i wouldn’t want to narrow it down to a single medium, i’ve done work with acrylics, aerosol, paste ups, stickers, jewelry, murals, magazines, toys, sculpture curating, live performance... a whole bunch of stuff. But at the moment i suppose im focusing on my studio work for an upcoming show, so mainly acrylics on paper and canvas. A contemporary artist.

What is the best thing about working on the street? The greatest thing about working in the street is its immediacy, in hours works can be put up, have an affect... and in some cases, in hours taken down again. Murals degrade and posters are torn down, i think being a part of that texture is far more exciting than a blank wall.

What is the worst thing about working on the street? What motivates you to produce your work? Getting wheat paste in your eye. I get stoked on completing new works, the Do you have any formal education in art? satisfaction from creating something new and original definitely plays a pretty big role, but I’ve completed a Bachelor of Design from ive always been making something or other... COFA at the moment it seems to be paintings. What things influence you in your How long have you been producing work creative endeavors? and how did you get started? Fantasy novels, arcades, pottery, symbols, Maybe 4 years or so..A good starting point sand, comics, curiosities, science-fiction, would have been.. ah, volunteering for RINCE toys, documentaries, driving, pedestrians, gallery in 2007. From there i really started to peers, poems, stickers, birds, beats, history, put allot more time into painting and drawing higher ground, skateboarding, religion, especially work in the streets. I was involved galleries, magazines, timelapse, idols, in the creation of Oh really Magazine and china-town, furniture, photographs, libraries, Gallery, form there its really just snowballed. gardens, textiles, magic... and mountains.

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Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? Sure, I think wherever you are is going to impact on what your doing, its style, its attitude and your approach. The Australian landscape is really captivating and is probably responsible for a bunch of famous works. I think i’d be happy for people to get a uniquely australian feeling from my work.

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Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Oh, just plugging away i guess. I think if i could sustain a creative practice without any supplementary work that would be great. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Just now im working on some pieces with Mark Alsweiler for our upcoming show at NINE LIVES in Brisbane, also a large panel for a pop up space in the QVB, i big canvas for

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the OUTPOST festival on cockatoo island ... ah and im part way through laying out a Max Berry Zine... can see works and exhibitions on www.maxberry.com.au and updates on the blog: www.idlepassage.blogspot.com

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Raptor Blood How would you describe your photography practice? Candid black and whites. What motivates you to take photos? I like going out and looking at new things. Its cool being able to record it. Good feedback plays a small role aswell I guess haha. How long have you been taking photographs and how did you get started? Ive been into photography for about two and a half years. I was skating a fair bit at that time but I was really bad at it. I got into photography around about that period to try and make up for my lack of skills. What makes working in the street appealing for you? There’s nobody to tell you what to do or how to do it.

What things influence you in your creative endeavors? My favorite photographers are James nachtwey and bill Henson. Ruedione’s ‘Backflashes’ got me into taking flicks of writers. 
I guess all three have that darker moody feel which I really like. After looking at some of your photographs, it seems you get yourself into some pretty wild situations, got any cool stories? I have a few that Ive either been too involved in the situation or too slow to capture it. I think the craziest was trying to get a heavy extinguisher off a bus full of people while my friend was in a fist fight with three fully grown men. It ended with him punching out the back bus window then us hiding in a golf course.

Do you have any formal education in art, and or photography? I did a course when I first started at this community centre in North Sydney but I didn’t learn anything really. I did a introduction to digital manipulation at Enmore TAFE and now im doing a photographic diploma at Ultimo.

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What would you like to be doing in 5 years time? I really want to be doing the same thing but hopefully making enough to get by somehow. I would like to expand expeditions eventually. What are you working on at the moment and where can we find out more about your work? I’m sort of just focusing on getting my course work done. Theres a bit of a work load and I don’t have the motivation to really work

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on anything in particular. Im more just doing it for enjoyment at the moment. Ive got a photodump on blogspot where I put the majority of my adventures on. 

 http://raptrblood.blogspot.com/
 I hope people enjoy it!

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Houl

Why do street art? Well why not? Why not do street art? It’s a medium which gives you an instant access to your audience, and you don’t need to worry about whether it’s good enough for this gallery, or how refined and finished your piece it. You draw it, paint it, print it, sketch it or slap it up, then you can just walk away. I mean it’s perfect. You put a piece up, and if you’re not happy with it you know that it’ll come down eventually and make room for something new, and if it does stay up well then good work, people will see it, and you’ve still achieved what you want. Besides that though, there’s always the rush. Seriously, nothing beats staggering around the streets late at night, or if it’s been a particularily good mission, the early morning, covered in glue, dragging a filthy broom and an empty bucket knowing that come sunrise people will see some new work, regardless of whether they love it or hate it, and when it all boils down, thats a night well siezed in my book

take, because the Sydney scene is pretty close knit, there’s always a lot of playing off of everyone else. Friendly competition motivating you to keep doing better. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I got started after I moved out of home into the big bad city in 2007 where I started seeing all these stickers and paste-ups, and with no real avenue to display my own stuff which, admittedly, wasn’t all that good at the time, i felt that fuck it, even if it’s shitty work i’m still getting up, and I did. I put up my stuff, which were small stickers, and i started going bigger, met up with a bunch of the other sydney street artists, and as a result my stuff has slowly developed into something i’m pretty happy of, because thats how you develop skills and styles.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I dunno, I mean I hope to still be painting and pasting but i guess with a more developed What motivates you to produce your work? and full style. I’ve been pushing myself to do more developed characters recently, I mean Definitely other peoples work. I see a new once upon a time I could only do faces, I then piece up on the street and I think, Fuck, thats worked a little harder and got shoulders into awesome! and then i’ll try and do a piece the mix, then arms and now the full torso, so that will top it. Theres always that give and at the moment I’m working on hips and legs

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and the stuff in between. It doesn’t sound much, but if I havent got that sorted in 5 years then i think it’ll be time to hang up the broom, clean off the glue and put the lid back on my Poscas. I’d also like to have put some works up overseas myself instead of getting jetsetting lackeys to do it for me

I tend to go through phases in my drawings, where i’ll draw a bunch of similar things, like farm animals, superheros etc. I enjoy my comics and my cartoons on top of that, but mostly i’ll just ask someone to throw out a word and take it from there.

What is the best thing about working on the street? I don’t know, unless you’ve done stuff on the street it’s hard to understand. Maybe it’s the other artists, or getting up for the sheer sake of it. Hell, I dont know, it’s just the street. Until recently I hadn’t done stuff anywhere else so it was all I knew. It’s going to bed after a night stickering and pasting knowing that come morning if someone doesn’t like what you’ve done it could all be gone. All that work for nothing. What is the worst thing about working on the street? The politics. There’s no one bitchier than a street artist with a bee in their bonnet, it’s amazing, I love it Do you have any formal education in art? No formal training, I did visual arts in highschool but was using charcoal and inks, I’ve just learnt from working with other artists and lots of trial and error.

Best career moment thus far? Can I say this interview? But really, selling my first artwork and participating in my first group show were definitely the best two moments.I think participating in Secret Wars was pretty damn amazing too, but really things are just getting better and better. I never would have thought id get to where I am right now when i first started, im doing festivals and getting invited to things, which im pretty happy with. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I’m just building up a bunch of works at the moment which I’ll probably show somewhere once I feel I’ve got enough and I’m happy with them all, I’m also starting to get my teeth into the Canberra street scene and making a bunch of paste-ups for Paste Modernism 3. You can always see my stuff at: www.facebook.com/houlart, www.flickr.com/arthoul and www.houlart.blogspot.com

What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I often have TV or movies on in the background while I sketch, so if i see a particular character i like i’ll try sketch that. I also sketch people on trains and buses, and

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Toggles

How would you describe your artistic practice? Hmmm, well I use line a lot which comes from drawing a lot I guess but I love exploring different mediums and trying new techniques, I Have been experimenting in Aerosols and oil / acrylic paint lately and ink, tattooing, charcoal, oil pastels, stenciling, lino, watercolours, stickers and a fair bit of digital image making aswell as poster and cd designs and am making a CNC machine to experiment with electronic drawing styles/glitches and also to create sculptures hopefully soon! And ideally want to make interactive pieces! Aswell as building a REPRAP machine to experiment with 3d printing, Just messing around with everything I can get my hands on really! I usually like to start a piece without too much of a plan, and see where the process takes me, and I guess in that lies the challenge, working an image until I’m happy with it.

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I grew up in country NSW with artist parents so I have been making stuff since before I could talk I suppose, haha, but I only really discovered graffiti PROPERLY after moving to Newcastle for uni to study robotics (for sculptural reasons), then Melbourne it had to be, and I have found loads of inspirational people here to keep horizons expanded. What is the best thing about working on the street? I love the spontaneity of it, and also it’s very different to a gallery in which only a select demographic of people actually see your work, instead everyone can see it. There’s no rules or imposed censorship, so you don’t have to fit a market and your free to say what you like.

Also the fact that the work ONLY exists at one place in the world is so rad, and therefore the way a piece can interact with the environment What motivates you to produce your work? in a way a canvas can’t! I guess feeling the urge to create, learn and Also, the ephemerality of works on the street progress? I go a bit crazy after a few days if I allows anyone to question what you are doing don’t make something… haha since the work isn’t protected (unless your Banksy haha), so anyone can deface it or

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decide it’s not good enough and go over it (or better yet COLLABORATE!), which I think pushes you make better works! What is the worst thing about working on the street? I guess that ANYONE can do it… haha. There’s a lot of crap out there! (some of which I’m responsible for I suppose :p ) Also the general public seems to have a MAJOR problem with spray cans for some reason… Do you have any formal education in art? I’m doing a Diploma in Print and Graphic Arts at the moment, still deciding whether or not to go to UNI… Pretty sure I’d rather learn by traveling I reckon. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Music, the future/unknown, people, places, technology, sciences, other artists, stories, vices, tattoos, thoughts, etc.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Hopefully overseas or freshly back ;) There are so many amazing places and cultures to experience; I’m very keen to spend some serious time seeing Europe! What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I recently got a commission to make some massive painted cutout characters to be the entrance for Shine On Festival which im pretty stoked about! And I’m almost finished a 50m café wall I’ve been doing solo which has been an epic! Putting stuff in various group shows and prizes and just sent off some images for outpost festival. There are always a million things to do! I’ve been Drawing a new pile of stickers for the streets and just trying to paint as much as possible really, and get stuff happening! Cheers to Tom for the chance to be in this and getting it all organized! Props!

Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? Oh yeah, it definitely does, as living in any country would shift your practice.

-Toggles

I think we are pretty lucky really, Australia is a pretty easy place to live and having the luxury of wide open spaces and some amazing landscapes and a sweet climate to top it off! So I guess the future will be a very interesting time for a lot of reasons.

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Ghstie

Why do street art? “What else there to do? But have fucking fun!” - Debbie does Blockhead What motivates you to produce your work? Movies, books, history, itchy fingers, just general day to day people and things really. Mainly the odd balls waiting at the bus stop or in the supermarkets are the best, there is no class system or hierarchy at the supermarket so you get a really great mix of people from society. The people I paint with are really pushing the boundaries in different ways instead of repeatedly doing the same thing stylistically which is hugely motivating and stimulating to be around. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I started with Ghstie in 2004 but was always making marks on walls, tables or serviettes and has always been a great way to relieve boredom. It wasn’t until a good friend of mine showed me how to use aerosol’s that I started to paint in the streets. Before then it was just sketching onto stickers, paste ups, or making vector illustrations into posters. I have been a devoted skateboarder for over twenty years and I think that culture has influenced me hugely graphically.

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What is the best thing about working on the street? The temporal nature of the work and the random people you are in contact with. What is the worst thing about working on the street? The temporal nature of the work and the random people you are in contact with. Do you have any formal education in art? Nope. My father never wanted me to attend Art School and wouldn’t help me financially unless it was commerce or something more “real” so I never went to any art’s institution. My art has always just been for fun and nothing’s taken too serious which has been the best way to create whatever it is I create. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? People - who push me to go out and paint every week or go paste or drive them out’ve the city to do shit somewhere else. Does living in New Zealand have an influence on your art? Yeah, nah, maybe aye Best career moment thus far? Career? If this is a career then possibly this is

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that moment? Do careers necessarily mean more “moments”? Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Well traveled, back in Wellies and finally have a proper studio. Fingers crossed aye. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I’ve just finished playing round with new sketches in illustrator, pretty happy with the results and think I’ll toy around with it on

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some walls for a few more weeks see where it takes me. Couple a group shows here in Wellington and some outdoor festivals coming up later this month too. Always on the grind, painting a wall, printmaking or sketching something different oh and hopefully my websites constructed by the time this comes out - www.ghstie.com otherwise I’ve been spending too much time painting or skating out in Wellies streets.

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Bhats

How would you describe your artistic practice? Things I think about painted on walls and smaller things.

What things influence you in your creative endeavours? The natural world and how people fit in, how nature fits into a domesticated world.

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I have been painting walls around 5 years. I started painting surfboards with my friends; we began naively tagging and then started doing pieces after we met some older writers by chance, after a while I became interested in art.

Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? Yes, history and environment especially.

What is the best thing about working on the street? Using a space that is otherwise forgotten, not having restrictions of a formal setting, the audience, the way the location changes the

What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Group shows here and there, lots of walls, working on lots of different projects. See: www.skeleton.tumblr.com

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I don’t know. There are lots I want to study and see and do. Climbing mountains, painting more rural spots, I don’t know.

context of a painting, the process of getting paint, getting a spot, the decay, exploring, being chased and getting away. What is the worst thing about working on the street? How writers are treated. Some are shamed and sent to prison while others are paid and glorified, and the amount of resources wasted on unnecessarily removing graffiti.

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Sam Andrews/ S-701A

How would you describe your artistic practice? I’ve heard its an aquired taste. Like vegemite.

painting more of a challenge at the moment. I’m finding it harder to talk my way out of spraying a wall and I once got rolled while I was out to paint with Ruskidd.

What motivates you to produce your work? I’m motivated by the attention the work tends Do you have any formal education in art? Nothing too fancey, just Highschool art and to get. I find it entertaining that a piece of chatting with other people paper glued to a wall can get different reactions from inderviduals; some people like it, some don’t.

to are art minded. I learn better from people than I do from a book. But

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I had a crazy art teacher to corrupted me and introduced me to the scene. I put up my first pastes in 2009, they were quite small but some are still up.

in saying that I love reading up on old school artists like Egon Schiele and Francis Bacon, they had mad steez. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Aesthetically, I think all the 90’s cartoons have ruined me with a sort of warped sence of humor. When I was smaller I used to sit in front of the TV all day watching oldschool shows such as Catdog, Rocko’s Modern

What is the best thing about working on the street? Probably seeing your stuff around. Its quite satisfying when you see something you’ve made in a public space, its even better when you stumble upon something you’ve forgotten Life and Ren and Stimpy. Whenever I watch an old tape of those shows or try about. Also the rush is undeniable. to remember episodes in my head, I’m What is the worst thing about working on bombarded by ideas and scenarios. They all the street? have ugly and disturbing undertones to their Lads and Concerned citizens. Its not too bad cartoons and I’ve felt attracted to them more if you pasting onto a wall, but if I’m finding than Disney’s toons.

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Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? I think my street work would be quite different or nonexistant at all if I wasn’t in Australia. Being able to hear feedback, meet up with like minded people and put things up easily has definately developed my style. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? In 5 years I’d hope to be a well traveled, down to earth guy still making art with a developed style. If in 5 years I’m still doing the

What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? I’m helping out with footage for a doco about street art called Heart Transplant with a few guys from around the world, this just involves me going out, filming then sending it off . But at the same time I have got a few tricks up my sleave that I’ll explore in 2012. I don’t want to give too much away, but one I’m keen on remonises on childhood memories of festivals. People can follow what I do on tumblr and I sometimes update my flickr.

same stuff with little improvement I’ll be extremly disappointed in myself.

www.S-701A.tumblr.com www.flickr.com/photos/s701a/

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Issac Shelley

How would you describe your artistic practice? 
My artistic practise would probably be best explained by the act of me being meant to fill out a questionaire, then beginning to doodle on the page without realising, which progresses quite quickly to me getting caught up in the fit of kinetic visual dancing that painting is, probably pouring a perfectly good hot chocolate over it, sticking it to a canvas, probably covering it in house paint or something anyway, flinging it into the yard upside down to gather whatever leaves/ sticks/bugs/bottlecaps it happens to land on, leaving it in the rain for a bit, coming back 2 months later, bringing it into the studio and try and do the finishing touches, normally using turps, acrylics, house paint, aerosols, smoke, glues, found objects, sometimes painting over a painting a year after i finished it with a completely new one, though i’ve tried to stop doing this cos that’s fuckin stupid obviously.
Then suddenly remembering i was meant to fill out a questionare.

things, fix things, paint is tears, blood, the patterns gravity and time make, the fractals and randomness are the same patterns that have reproduced over millenia to create us, sometimes I’m trying to paint a feeling of a memory, to gain a better understanding, other times when its 3am raining and your in the backyard in your boxers cos you had some weird urge to paint, you end up completely becoming engrossed and in the flow, like you’ve been bipassed for something held deep in the old earth’s bosom, How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I think ive been painting and drawing and stuff pretty much always, my grandma is an artist and i used to always paint with her when i was a kid, kept doing it all through school, my books got completely fucked from drawings on the margins that crept into the pages haha. What is the best thing about working on the street?



What motivates you to produce your work? The russshhh bra The fact that we are not alive for very long, plus painting feels extremely kind of.. spiritually therapeutic, i can admit things, ruin

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What is the worst thing about working on the street? I guess if you were someone that got up hard all the time, and you got caught, that would suck, but since I’m a pussy i mostly don’t really have that risk

stories old and new being created, the Blue Mountains has influenced my work a huge amount, when the rain comes and feeds the valleys you can almost hear the trees drinking, bird calls all around, thousands of species of wildlife, plants and fungus...

Do you have any formal education in art?

Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I cannot say

I think i learnt way more from the year i had in my backyard pouring liquid pigments and making mistakes than any course i have done, i think art is the very very last thing that should need a course telling you how to do it. An art history would probably be pretty interesting though. What things influence you in your creative endeavors?

 The many people I love, I guess everything influences us in some way, I respect many many men and women’s work but I try to paint from within so as to bring something new to the table.

What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Had a little break from the painting for a bit cos Ive been busy with a bunch of shit, was giving myself some freshening up time for the warm summer painting nights coming up, gonna start organising an exhibition or something soon probs, just gotta be in the right mindframe so I do it properly. Im also a shit**** who doesn’t know how to make a web page for viewing of my work, which is another thing on my to do list, i can get mighty distracted sometimes..


Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art?

 Definately, I’ve grown up the the Blue Mountains and the land is just crawling with

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Georg Whelan

How would you describe yur artistic practice? I’d describe my art practice as a manic reflection and map of my life and reality. I think the way I work is kinda just taking whatever is happening around me, be it relationships, travel or just things I think about and putting them down on a surface, if for nothing else, just so I can have more of a grip and visual interpretation of what I see and how I feel. At the same time I exaggerate whatever sentiment I’m trying to get across, I use a lot of icons and motifs or whatever to try and have some narrative so that if some one wants to look at it they can understand what it’s about. Vague explanation but that’s how it goes for me.

are an Indonesian based collective, some of them are actually visiting Melbourne this month, (as part of, gotta plug it, ASIIK CITY). really cool political stuff that was made to be showed on the streets. Also, end of the day a lot of it is just because I have a have a real love for painting and visual art and I’m motivated to keep producing and stay productive is so I get better, I wanna paint like my heroes. Whiteley, Picasso, Caravagio, Scheile the masters yo. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I’ve always drawn a lot, I’ve even always scribbled on walls.

I grew up in country Qld and I got kicked out of pretty much the only school in my town What motivates you to produce your work? when I was 16 and moved to Brisbane, at just fleshing life out. Trying to primarily get out that point I was exposed to real graffiti culture the things that stick on my mind, but then and also could drop by big galleries with make it applicable to a sitter or someone Whiteleys on the wall and shit. That definitely who’d see something I make. I still get into kicked me in the teeth and had me filling a lot a lot of social-realism as well and don’t just more sketch books. But I always made art, paint about things that are insular. I think always drew. Visual art is a great vehicle for messages, that’s why I’ve always painted outside as well, almost like propaganda. A group of artists who I’m really into are the Taring-Padi who

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What is the best thing about working on the street? Well I don’t know about best, different times for different reasons, sometimes it’s trying to get a message out, I used to get right into stencils and print stuff and would do it like a Stalin-Propaganda mission, paint the shit out of a boost juice in a gentrified neighbourhood every night or something. Other times I just really wanted to bomb so I could see my name and my friends names around, mark making. At the moment it’s just the excitement, I love a good chase, I love vandalising things and breaking shit. It’s just about having a city like Melbourne where not every one takes a real vigilante stance on it so you probably won’t get black-eyes or lockedup and you can just drink beers and prowl with buddies and have a surface you didn’t have buy or stretch. endless free canvas with exaggerated arm movements where you occasionally get to play cops and robbers or ninjas and get chased. its great. What is the worst thing about working on the street? Huh, vigilante hero types and cops. Maybe also the hype that surrounds certain vains of painting outside, sometimes I wish it was less cool, I think that would leave more room for more genuine expression and less graphic design inspired shit. I remember first being really excited about painting outside because I saw it as a way of making art that’s

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recognised but at the same time really free from any hierarchy of good and bad that exists in gallery/museum culture. Maybe I’m just getting synical here but I think the hype has taken away from that a bit. Hard not to feel like it’s lost some soul when you go out to put up stickers you hand painted individually and you see a million stickers by Obey that you know he didn’t even put up himself. I don’t know if Brisbane has that obey campaign at the moment but Sydney and Melbourne had it come through. Same goes in cities like Berlin or any graffiti capital, amazing places to paint, burner rooftops and just insane shit, but then there’s big nike and adidas commissioned murals right in the middle, makes you question what you’re doing yourself aswell. I don’t want to pretend to be a brand or feel like I’m trying to be. Do you have any formal education in art? I did a couple of years at QUT, really theory based, but it was a real wank. I left to do a mentorship type thing in Indo and then moved to Berlin to just hang out and paint, I learnt a lot more doing that. so lots of informal education in art. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? I think I kinda answered this already, but yeah, just responding to what the world throws me or whatever I’m chasing myself.

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Also the work of buddies and people I paint with or even people who’s art I just see around the place. Been hanging with a kid who writes snot rag in Melbourne, her style and amount she get’s up really inspired me. Also just moved into a haggard neighbourhood where nothing gets cleaned or fixed or buffed. Been loving the general mark makings all over the place. built-up tags and bill posters on decaying street signs, human touch interacting at different levels of society and consciousness. That’s whats kept me in the studio this week. starting to sound hippy, fucking hate hippies. i’ll leave it there. Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? Yeah, every where I’ve ever lived and been has influenced my art. I read a quote that for an artist to respond to the world you have to capture the rhythm of it. That’s always been a kind of motto for my art practice. Travel is important to me, but I’m from here and of course it’s ingrained in me. Speaking specifically Australian art, I really love Indigenous Australian art. I’d love to one day have some kind of visual-influence from that in my own practice but I’ve never been able to work out how I’d go about it without just really biting something that isn’t mine. hopefully one day. One for the vault till the lightning strikes.

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Where do you see yourself in 5 years? In 5 years, well fuck I don’t know. I know that in two months I’m going to pack a bag and try to hitchhike to Darwin and from there get over to Cambodia and chill and draw like a mad man for a few months and get a really dope line so I bomb shit bigger, better. Hopefully in 5 years I’ll still be living in a way where I can make short notice decisions to do stuff like that. At the same I try to stay fairly focused and goal driven. I do have other aspiration as far as working and being successful as a visual artist, I want to show in galleries, I want to be able to paint and sell my art so I can pay bills and eat good food and have nice paint brushes and stuff. but at the same time i’d love it if it happened in a way where I could balance my interaction with it and not get too caught up with the crap that’s behind it. I want to continue to paint for me and not start printing money. Then hopefully a live in a castle or something ya know. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? At the moment, I have some ‘devil-humanfuck’ paintings on the wall, and also there’s a half little girl half reincarnation of Shiva (complete with human skull necklaces) and also I’ve been wanting to make these canvas’s for ages that respond to an old

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Australian social-realist called Yosl Bergners work. He had this painting I really love called ‘Aborigines in Fitzroy’ and they’re these really bleak paintings depicting Indigenous people in Fitzroy, Melbourne, which at the time was the ghetto and where commissioned houses where set up. So I’m trying to kinda revisit his painting and use the same balance and colour but show the gentrified version of Fitzroy that exists today and that I see when I go down. there’s still commission flats on Brunswick St, but for the most part it’s young white hipsters drinking lattes all up and down the strip, or at night girls in short skirts spewing at the tram stop, but I’ve tried a few times so not sure if i’ll finish them any time soon.

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Well I put stuff on my blog from time to time, once I’m on the mission up north I’ll be much more active with that, but at the moment, at least the next week I think it’ll all just stay in the studio. I’ve got a stack on the wall where I pile them, come buy one if you want. I think I’ll get daytime flicks of graffiti I’ve been painting and past ups i’ve been working on and get those on my blog as long as there’s some sun this weekend. but for starters try georgart.blogspot.com and www.flickr.com/photos/georgwhelanart/

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Pahnl

How would you describe your artistic practice? I paint little pictographic figures and animals, breathing life into their small world.

out of the desire to do something different) that I got my first piece up on the street.

It’s about creating a feedback loop that will make me a happier person than I am now, so I suppose in that sense, I am driven by a certain element of catharsis. As a very fortunate (and large) side effect, those that come across my work are welcomed into the world I create too.

work, atleast in terms of on street stuff. So being able to refine a design on the computer, cut it and then paint it relatively quickly appeals to me.

I didn’t immediately land into the style that I’m known for these days, although the motif What motivates you to produce your work? of cats and dogs have been there since the start. Once I started to integrate pictograms There has always been an inherent passion for creative expression in me and it manifests and symbols into my work, that theme was soon translated into what you see today. itself through street art, stencil work, film, photography and animation. I’m not out with What attracts you to the stencil medium? the intention of ‘changing the world’ and I I’m not an impulsive painter, I envy those that believe if I’m going to spend my time working can throw something up freehand on the on something, it should be positive, that it spot without any prior planning. That sort of should be uplifting. freedom is what I’m striving for more in my

First and foremost, I create for myself and I believe any artist seeking sincerity should do the same for themselves. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I first got into stenciling in 2003 but it wasn’t for another three years (out of intimidation and

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The focus of my ‘off street’ work is about pushing the aesthetic of stencils as far as I can, since the fact you’re not rushing to paint something affords you to take your time and use as many stencil layers as you like. However, ‘on street’ work is the more fun of the two categories. You can’t play with ‘space’ and the city on a canvas or how people (usually unexpectedly) encounter your work. That’s where the beauty of stencils lie.

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What is the best thing about working on the street? It gets me out of the house…it’s the earliest form of expression and, as such, is alive in all of us…it’s fun to create this ‘smaller world’ out in public…and the massive opportunity for collaboration with the city and with other people, whether they‘re self proclaimed artists or not. What is the worst thing about working on the street? Rain, police, CCTV. Do you have any formal education in art? I studied and work as a graphic designer, which is plain to see in my stuff, hah. You get out of education what you put in but I don’t think university is the only way to go about things and it can be counterproductive. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Friends, books, the net, urban spaces…I am the sum of all that interests me and that is something impossible to put entirely into words. Do you think living in the UK has an influence on your art? Certainly. There’s a lot of humour in my work, albeit with an undercurrent of pessimism, and I think that goes some way to describe the English psyche. I’m not explicitly patriotic or anything like that, afterall, I’m half Russian too. Throw the World Wide Web into that mix

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and it’s difficult not to hold the view that this planet is in it together….what unites us is far greater than what divides us. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? I aim to be established and supporting myself entirely from my art. For the timebeing, I support myself through a combination of graphic design as well as selling my work through galleries and online. Either way, in five years, I want to be able to look back at the work I’m doing now and see the mistakes I was making clear as day but also to be able to see the origins of my progress. I have a lot more developing to go and I’m here to remain hungry for the next level and the next and next… What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? There are a dozen of projects in progress at any one time but I’m interested in developing a technique that’ll allow me to paint more impulsively, whether it’s with a system of stencils or getting my freehand skills up to scratch but I think that second option is unlikely; my work hinges on flawlessly geometric shapes and straight edges…but who knows, things adapt, things change. As for catching my work, there’s stuff all around England, particularly Oxford (my hometown), but I’m dying to get down to Melbourne within the next year or two and hook up with the local greats.

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Will Coles

How would you describe your artistic process? Sometimes I find the object I want but take ages to find the right word(s) to carve in it, sometimes the other way around. The only limit on the object used at th moment is that the bigger it gets the more concrete I have to used to replicate it so the heavier & more difficult to move the final piece is.

told to. Don’t piss away your money on objects you don’t need.

The smallest sculptures I’ve made were concrete dog turds with art-wank words on (like ‘recontextualise’). The largest & heaviest concrete one was several washing machines, though the largest was a 3m long fibre-glass soy sauce disposable ‘fish’ bottle.

How long have you been producing work & how did you get you started? I’ve always been a sculptor but I really started doing ‘uncommissioned public installations’ (to give it its full art-wank title) since about 2004. If you can make art it has to be seen but if no galleries will show your work then how will anyone see your work. If no one ever sees it how will you get feedback, without feedback it’s difficult to grow as an artist. Any artist that makes their work purely for themselves & doesn’t show it is just wanking off in front of a mirror as far as I care! Your work must be pretty shit if it can’t stand a little criticism.

What motivates you to produce your work? Basically the motivation behind my work is to make people think, like “what is that?”, “What is that shit?”, “What does it mean?”, “Does it mean...?”, etc. Each person’s potential is incredible but most people are pissing their lives away. Everyone knows the “Fight Club” speech, lots of people have memorised it but few have actually acted on it. Advertisements tell you what to buy, so just don’t buy what you’re

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Use the internet as a tool to find information, don’t just watch TV, that’s corrupt old-media. No commercial channel will tell you to save your money when their income is purely from advertisers that want you to buy their shit. Don’t be a consumer, that’s simply the dumbest thing you can aspire to be.

What is the best thing about working on the street? The best thing about doing ‘street’ art is

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the feedback, the immediate (smashed up by haters or souvenired) & the slower kind, the internet, word-of-mouth, other media, rumours. Your work lives or dies out there, it works or it doesn’t, you can learn from that. People take pictures & post them on blogs & Flickr if they like them & others comment on them from there. The bizarrest stories & myths are started about who I am, why I do what I do, all that.

Berlin is probably the art capital of the world right now, London & Paris are good for graff especially on the train lines & canals but it’s pretty expensive there. Valencia’s graffiti is awesome, one of the best scenes I’ve ever seen yet it has a smaller population than Brisbane!

What is the worst thing about working on the street? The worst thing is the immediate feedback! Haters smash stuff (I’m often an ‘art fag’ to them), there’s a couple of pussies in Sydney that fuck with my work & talk shit about me but they always seem to avoid me, funny that. There’s also collectors that think anything that’s ‘street art’ must have value so they often just take it because they think it’s worth something. Please, if you’re going to steal my work steal it because you like it, not because you think you can sell it! Do you have any formal education in art? My Grandpa is a professional sculptor so he’s always been there to teach me skills & old skool art theory. & we’re both colour-blind! Then I did art college in London & Glasgow before doing a runner here. Travel is the best education, it’s a cliché but you have to travel. Work, save, beg, borrow or steal but you have to get out into the world.

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All the best Australian artists travelled, most of them were recognised for their talent overseas before they came back & the Australian art world realised it. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? In five years it would be great to have enough recognition, in sales & by the art world, to make more work overseas, to work with other artists & crews internationally. &, even better, to not be skint. What are you working on at the moment & where can we see more of your work? I’m working on lots of things right now, concrete dolls, guns & other small stuff for the streets as well as bigger stuff for a gallery show in March. I’ve started on screen prints but I’ve got a lot to learn but it’s all good. My work is around Sydney CBD & the Inner West & Melbourne CBD & Fitzroy as well as sprinkled around Australia. This year I introduced the UK, France & Spain to my work too. ☺

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Sokei/ Kois

Why do street art/ graffiti? I like graffiti because its this interesting form of communication where you can show people you exist without talking to anybody. What motivates you to ‘Get Up’? “Getting Up” for me is just something fun to do.. you go to places you’ve never been before with good people and make pretty pictures along the way. How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I’ve always been drawing, but started graffiti around 2007-8 What is the best thing about working on the street? The best thing is meeting interesting people. What is the worst thing about working on the street? The worst thing is all the negativity you get from the boring people for being part of the “graffiti community”. You get old ladies threatening to call the cops because you’re painting a sewer, middle aged men smoking dirty cigarettes driving stinky 4wheel drives telling you spray can fumes are noxious...

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What things influence you in your art and style? Part of my influence in art and especially graffiti is the way that in my head, I am always trying to come to terms with whats real and what isn’t real.. i look back on the things i made at that time to see how I was feeling and what I was thinking about, like “kois the psychotic medication junkie” Where do you see yourself in 5 years? In 5 years.. hopefully a happy man living off my own makings. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? At the moment im working on a book called “Cellar Door” it’s basically going to be a book about some kind of teenage creature’s hallucination-adventure/right of passage into manhood, filled with detailed pictures to look at and things to read. http://www.flickr.com/photos/koisone/

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Vars One

Why do street art? At first because I was an angry, angry young man, after that because its just so much bloody fun! Now I do it to make up for all the crap bombing I did back in the day. I feel bad that i dropped so many drunken throwies and tags etc that now ive gotta make up for it by going bigger, safer, and droppin’ some style for once!

up, sometimes its the chicks and sometimes its all for the photo! The best thing is knowing you did what you said or thought you were going to do I reckon. Proving your not full of shit all the time!

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? Professionally for 4 years but without pay, forever. I’ve always drawn and painted. I only started to learn how to use spray paint 5 years ago and i still don’t have the skills, but as long as I continue to have a good time i’ll keep learning. But in some form or another, ie music, sculpture and painting, ive always had that creative outlet.

Do you have any formal education in art? Not in terms of practical art but i studied Art Theory which was interesting sometimes, but too academic for me to take it seriously. They overdo it, over complicating simple stuff and glorifying conceptual art that is just self indulgent shit.

What is the worst thing about working on the street? Cops, Heros and haters. also those fuckers who put up advertising posters over paste What motivates you to produce your work? ups or throwies or whatever. When i see them I try to give em shit, steal their brushes, bomb To be real I have no idea! I love it so I’d be their vans, kick over their glue, whatever it doing it anyway and also i love it! I suppose takes! thats it then hey, because i love it.

What is the best thing about working on the street? I’m not sure man, it varies, sometimes it’s the viewership, sometimes its the act of getting

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What things influence you in your creative endeavors? Everything and nothing. Best career moment thus far? Tracksides and panels while the snow was falling in Paris.

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Where do you see yourself in 5 years? Dunno, alive hopefully. If im alive and i’m earning then I hope i’m still smashing out some quality stuff that has developed from where I am now. I’d hate to think i’d be

can do that then I want to use the funds and piss off overseas to refresh my head and give my creative tip a boost. If you want to see my work keep your ear to the ground, I dont really promote my own work very much because I cant be bothered, doing it is enough.

doing the same stuff in five years. What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Working on launching my site and getting the business side of things tight. Looking for opportunities to paint with more heads. Doing a line of necklaces and some industrial design products that will drop later this year. I’m also trying to find the right gallery for a solo show towards the end of the year. If I

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Find me on facey and you can get irregular updates and see some poor quality photos. If everything goes to plan then i’ll have a site with plenty of bullshit and misinformation any day now and i’ll try to get the addy out for anyone who wants to check it. Peace

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Ruskidd

How would you describe your artistic practice? Quite energetic, flowing and dynamic. bit of a mix of things really, and still experimenting with different mediums, producing heaps of work.

big, and constantly growing. Meeting new people and positive feedback is always a good thing too.

What is the worst thing about working on the street? Station rats, lads, stepping on typical back What motivates you to produce your work? alley objects, big egos and heroes that think you are doing a lot worse than painting walls. Mainly the graffiti and street art scene which is what i’m most interested in; seeing their Do you have any formal education in art? work on the street and in progress makes me Not yet, but I’m about to start my VCE. come back for more. Meeting other artists Mostly art and design subjects motivates me, especially being able to draw, paint and collaborate with them. What things influence you in your creative endeavors? How long have you been producing work Life, Bears, Artists, Writers and and how did you get started? Photographers, interesting mediums and I started making stickers and stencils for techniques, weird objects and cameras. remote control cars a few years ago, and it Not school. really took off from there; painting non-stop. Do you think living in Australia has an What is the best thing about working on influence on your art? the street? Absolutely! such an awesome scene here, I love seeing my own work on the street, especially in Melbourne, very lucky to live in even if someone has added or taken some such a nice place. for themselves. The streets of Melbourne are always full of surprises. Discovering little Where do you see yourself in 5 years? hidden spots, and leaving your own mark that Stuffing teddy bears in a prison factory, people can recognise as art is pretty cool. Its in Mexico. great to know that we’re part of a culture so

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What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Mainly working on freehand works, and combining it with stencils and interesting techniques. Also keeping it a running theme with the bears, and some crazy swirly

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cyclone things. Also having a go with different mediums like screen and lino printing, weird inks and photography. You can find more of my work on http://ruskidd.tumblr.com/

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Mr Good Thanks

How would you describe your artistic practice? Artistic practice at the moment involves bush bashing to abandoned spots with a backpack full of spray cans, buff, rollers, vessels, a knife, a tin of sardines, sometimes a bottle of water, my iPod blasting the sounds of steely dan and sometimes a bike. It’s getting cold in Europe now too so it’s becoming quite the battle...

too for this project and I kept going back for 6 months hanging tough with the resident artist there a chick called Max. She was rad and let me use the space as much as I wanted, not to mention all the paint and photocopy machine.

What motivates you to produce your work? I think what motivates me most to paint is the basic idea of doing that which I enjoy. I love painting thus I do it. I’m sure I could wax lyrical about this and that but in a nut shell it just makes me happy... must say though I consider myself lucky to have this in my life and often try to imagine what id do if I hadn’t have been bitten by the bug.. I think my life would be rather dull and the Sega megadrive may even get a dust off.

Since late 09, I’ve been focusing on painting without stencils and am really loving the immediacy of the action. still love cutting the occasional stencil here and there but I’m buggered if I’m gonna cruise around the streets carrying the dang things again!

How long have you been producing work and how did you get started? I got started back in 05 when I heard that the local community centre was going to pay someone to paint a mural. I had just become aware of stenciling (late bloomer) and asked if I could get involved. In the end they payed me

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At the end of the 6 months I had my first solo show there called Look at It and that was that, I was hooked. I’ve been painting and taking photos and been into the whole creative process ever since.

What is the best thing about working on the street? The best things about painting street side is the fact that usually the only limits size wise are those which you put on yourself.. It’s not like your limited to a small canvass etc.. Secondly, I love the public forum or at least the potential for this. I do many paintings that maybe nobody will ever see, but imagine down the track when they do... the mind boggles. they might even have to race home

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and hit the youtube button for their smooth fix of Gerry Refferty. It goes without saying... but ill say it anyway, the textures of the bricks, wood, concrete, old Graff, urban detritus... wonderful stuff. It’s better than any French canvass with a gesso primer.. What is the worst thing about working on the street? The worst is when you’re ill prepared. It’s definitely a challenge to adapt to things going wrong. sometimes it works really well and pushes you. other times you fail.. like when you realize you spent your last 50 cents on a New Yorker from Giant (paint shop) only to get to the spot and find out it’s one of clarkys weird tuxons... gutted. depending on the spot too rain can be rather boring. Do you have any formal education in art? My formal education in art compiles of mum taking me to the museum of modern art in Sydney as a kid and me trying to draw Ned Kelly in the bush waiting to hold up a passing wagon... oh and I made it through a semester of Fine Art at Deakin Uni before having a disagreement with my teacher and getting turfed out... she got in the deans ear about me and that was that. crazy really, I really liked her; she was a good teacher, but I wasn’t going to listen to her trying to tell me i’d done no work when i’d actually done more than the whole class... ho hum it wasn’t to be.

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What things influence you in your creative endeavors? My influences come from most aspects of my daily life. be it my passion for music (tower of power, Kamal, traffic, Alice in chains, frenzil rhomb, new two’s greatest hits and fun boy three), love of op-shopping or the inspiring friends and foes all over the world.. I guess I’ve always been into old tribal cultures and dress too. When I was a kid i’d devour volumes of National Geographic whilst on the toilet. I definitely love old styles of art, music, drawing, printing, photography, clothing etc.. Do you think living in Australia has an influence on your art? Living in Oz influenced me and my art from the beginning. Melbourne is quite the melting pot of styles and trends so I was always keenly watching the ebb and tide of these. I’ve always been on the outskirts of the super cool mostly by choice but have always been aware of what’s swag and what’s not at the different times. Ha, not really sure why I said that but anyhow, moving on. More importantly living in Oz and especially Melbs was rad because it enabled me to experience such different people and cultures from the get go. as a child my dad was studying Thai music and dance and so I was always accompanying him to commissioned flats around the city so he could meet with

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various musicians. looking back this opened me up to completely different artistic styles of music, food, art, costume etc. I’ve seen a lot of Australia and I can’t imagine growing up in some of those one horse towns in the middle of woop woop... I guess it’s a completely different ball game with its benefits too though.... You are currently spending some time overseas, has being exposed to new styles and cultures changed and influences your art style? My travel over the last 7 months has seen me

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hit up The States, Canada, France, England, Germany, Spain, Holland and Belgium... and leaving for Brazil on the 20th of Oct. It’s hard not too be influenced by this time out. and i’d hate to be numb to it also. I’m super stoked to be doing this. i’ve noticed definite changes in my painting over this period. It’s interesting to hang out with different people too and see how they approach painting, from the super organized Belgians too the chill Spaniards.. Amazing.

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What would you like to be doing with yourself in 5 years? In 5 years I hope I’m not asking Tom Groves what ever happened to that zine interview I did... haha I think as long as I’m painting, still trying to skate a bit and reading a book on selfrealization, I’ll be bonza!! What are you working on at the moment and where can we see more of your work? Currently, and most recently I’ve started

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working on emblematic paintings that are pretty wacky and abstract. Parallel’s can definitely be drawn with Mondrian and Picasso. I’m still very new to the whole game so I’m still trying to define my style. I’m loving geometric structures mixed with curvature and bright colours. Also I’ve always worked in a 2d format and now I’m getting the urge too change that with the use of highlights etc so am experimenting on that front.. http://www.mrgoodthanks.blogspot.com/

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Super! Thanks again to all the great people that made this issue possible. To be featured in Knock knock magazine email whatsthematterwiththeblom@hotmail.com Your contributions in article and image form are most welcome! *Disclaimer: in no way does Knock knock magazine endorse or encourage any illlegal graffiti or promote its activity. Knock knock magazine accepts no responsibility for illegal work featured herein. Published November 2011 Enjoy the sun! - Tom

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Knock knock Magazine  

Knock knock magazine profiles street level emerging and established Australian and international creatives doing their thing, and doing it...

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