Grafite: Well, it depends. If you know you’re a street artist you might use graffiti as a means of expression — but this is a bit of a paradox. The other graffiti I do, my name is John and as a graffiti artist you get used to getting the name of the guy, the type of graffiti he does or the type of material that he uses. So it is not only the graffiti art itself; you can also look at the use of the image; if there’s too much of it, you have to have a different way of doing it than when you are making your own. The other stuff I do is more about using symbols and things that have a lot of meaning to them. It’s about using symbols to create a sense of place or the feeling of things. I’m not a very graphic guy so I don’t do drawings or symbols very much. I do a lot of things more based on the use of space.
You recently posted an album cover of the ’90s rock group the Cramps titled ‘The Cramps’. What was the inspiration behind the cover?
Grafite: The album cover was the idea of making a record cover by using the Cramps as the example of a rock band, a group that we thought looked like that, but also a pretty modern band with lots of graphics and colors and stuff like that. It’s an illustration of the Cramps being a band that has changed over the years, a group that started out in the early 1970s and have been around for years, and now they are a rock and roll group in the modern sense. So I decided I will use the Cramps, I’ll make a picture of them and make it into an illustration, using their iconic image, but then going to the point where I go and make a painting of all four members of the band doing different things. I use the image of the Cramps as the main image, it’s where the illustration is going. But it’s also about the Cramps as a band, about what they look like as people as a band.
In the new film The Last Day of Summer, the music video features many references to the art of Graffiti. Have you noticed any of your work being influenced by graffiti?
Grafite: It hasn’t changed at all. The main thing is that it’s the same idea but in another form. To be in the video and looking at the street I have to understand that this is
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