We meet at a small and very relaxed kebab restaurant deep in the streets of Raval, the complete opposite of fancy and fabulous. The modest artist that sits before me has no problem with the choice of meeting place, and looks curiously around the place.
How would you describe yourself as an artist?
I am very influenced by graffiti and characters, and rather than doing something very technical or a wise composition, I try to focus more on style.
What inspires you?
I get inspired by other graffiti writers, artists, comic books and just everyday stuff that triggers my mind for a new idea. Qiter and Ollio is two graffiti artists that have inspired me a lot.
Dan's new tattoo.
Describe the art scene where you come from?
My opinion is that Gothenburg has always had a dope graffiti scene, there are many artists out there doing crazy stuff that you can't compare to traditional New York graffiti. I like the Swedish style! But now the scene is quite boring as the policy for graffiti is zero tolerance, it all gets removed within 24 hours.
I used to have magazines from Germany and New York, classic train paintings and wildstyle shit, but when looking on the walls of my hometown something else was going on, the crew Fups was doing lines that looked like something a 4 year old had drawn, X-man (artist in the crew) always did these really big black shadows covering most of the wall. It seemed like they weren't trapped in a style of what graffiti was, but more like they tried to do something new. To maybe "find" a own style. The style was more "happy" than others' stuff I have seen.
What is your belief about the art scene in Barcelona
I don't know so much about specific artists that come from here but it's an important town for creativity with all its art museums, architecture and dope graffiti...When I was here I saw a lot of cool stuff in the streets, even though I have heard that the policy for graffiti has changed over here too. And off course, Montana comes from there and Zosen, good stuff!
How do you think graffiti in Barcelona differs from other cities?
I'm not sure really but I guess it's a metropol where writers come and go so it's a lot of mixed styles and diversity.
What do you think about the anti-graffiti laws?
I don't think it matters that much, I mean as an graffiti artist you are used to doing your stuff whether people like it or not, just to express yourself as an individual...
I understand where the laws come from but I hate them. I would rather see a solution where you can work "with" them more than against them ... I mean, the graffiti is still going to be there with or without laws.
How do you think the graffiti art will develop in the future? Can it coexist with these laws?
Yeah it will never disappear, as the street art culture has developed through graffiti due to a changed climate I think it will keep changing and taking other paths. People will never stop expressing themselves on streets, I hope at least.
What do you want to achieve with your work?
To be honest nothing really, I have always been drawing and just having fun for myself. Showing it and having people giving the thumbs up is just another part of it. It always triggers me everyday seeing amazing art and feeling I have to step up, it's like a huge competition I will never win so I'm just having fun with it. But of course I want to keep evolving and learn new techniques, I have just started making prints for clothes and there is loads of clay at home waiting for me to shape it up. I want to do so much with art, a whole mural would be a dream come true or even draw on a naked girl, I've seen pictures of that on Internet, pretty dope shit haha.
Upcoming swedish graff painter Dan Persson