Today i had the pleasure to meet the Flemish street artist SMOK painting a new mural in Antwerp. I had the opportunity to interview him for StreetArt360 Readers.
Hi Bart It’s a great pleasure to meet you today, first i would like to know where you are from?
I’m from Antwerp, Belgium. One of the most beautiful towns on earth 😉
Can you tell us a bit more about your artistic career ? When and how did it start?
I have been drawing since I was a little kid. But when I was about 14 years old I discovered graffiti/street art, which I found very fascinating. So I started painting myself…
Often You chose animals as a subject on your walls. Why is that ? Are you committed to wildlife and animal preservation? Or is it only an aesthetic choice ?
I find animals often smarter than people… not that I think people are stupid. But in our society, the motives of humans are often wrong, it’s often about money, career, more… and animals don’t do that. They just live their lives.
I’ve notice you’ve done a mural in tribute to René Magritte in Lessines ? Why is that ? Is Magritte a source of inspiration for you ?
I’m inspired by lot’s of artists, but this wall is a commission for the city of Lessines, where Magritte was born. They asked me to paint one of Magritte’s famous paintings, but I just created a new work, based on a few of my favorite Magritte paintings.
Who are your favorite artists , painters, sculptors ? do they influence your work ?
I’m open to everything… It’s like with music I love good old funk, hip-hop/rap but I listen to everything, even combinations of Mettal and Classic. I don’t now if there are influences you can see in my work, but I feel I’m still searching my own thing.
Did you collab with other graffiti or street artists ?
Yep, I love to work with other artists. It gives me energy and makes me look different at my thing.
Where can we see your artworks in Flanders ?
Most of my work can be found in Antwerp. Check StreetArtCities app or website.
In the rest of the world ?
I did a few walls in The Nederlands, France, Portugal, Long Beach LA, San Clemente, San Diego…
Can you tell us what is your own personal favorite artwork?
That’s hard for me… but I still like the chimpanzee I have painted in Den Haag in 2016
Do you have any events, exhibitions in the next few months ?
I will try to do an expo in the spring of 2017.
Do you want to add anything else to Streetart360 readers ?
Just enjoy live and try to be good for our planet and other people!
SMOK PHOTO GALLERY:
Pictures by courtsy of SMOK