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Vlady, the Sicilian artist that disrupts common order

VladyArt  has been talking to ISSA this week, bringing us all closer to the person behind some fascinating urban improvisation. An artist with no plan but full of energyto disrupt any common order we experience daily. Inspired by the new media and social troubles, he aims to pinpoint the decay and lack of sustainability in our society.

Vlady moves around with his ”assault kit” and never signs his works and he is definitely not a plumber!  Enjoy this entertaining interview with Vlady!

(ISSA) – What you choose to drink? Coffee, Tea, Beer, Soda or something else?

(VladyArt) – What time is it? I drink beer after 5pm. Before its always American coffee, with one of sugar and one of cream.

-Introduce yourself to us…

In common with other colleagues, I have some hard time when it comes to describe myself. I rarely show my face, tell my age, reveal my status or my feelings. I prefer to talk through my weird things.

– (Optional) where does your tag name come from?

My name is pretty weird by itself – for an Italian. Therefore, I use it as a tag: “Vlady”. “VladyArt” (written all together) was born as an internet site but today is a sort of second skin, my nickname.

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-How do you define yourself? Artist? Street artist? Anything else?

I see a lot of misunderstanding and embarrassment around these names. Nobody wants to live tied up to strict categories, but they are inevitable in order to explain your position into the world. I say I’m an artist. I can’t say I’m a painter. Neither a plumber. “street artist” is acceptable when we go down to the specific, however lots of my stuff isn’t street art, not at all…

– How did it all start for you, and what is it nowadays?

One can’t wake up and decide to be a “street artist”. The street art decides about you. To me it happened some 10 years ago. After my art studies in Milan, I have moved to Dublin. Here I started progressively to be bored with indoor painting and drawing. So I went outdoor to take pictures and make visual experiments. Then I carried colours with me. At that time I had no plan, neither targets. Today instead I dedicate a lot of my valuable time (and money) to this life. It makes me feel better and I get to know cool people. You may feel the same good shit with sport or playing with videogames, but I prefer art. I do it for myself, I’m this way. What is all this? A game? Something very serious? It’s just human expression, communication, I believe.


-What is the first thing you do when you get up in the morning?

Haha, fantastic. I try to split my “I have to” from the “I want to” moments. Its a hard job. Obviously I have work things to carry out every day but whenever Im free I do some art work, or I share some art content with my network.

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-Street art is mostly a visually stimulating form of art. To add one more sense to it, what music would you pick to accompany your art work?

music is art. there is music and there are songs. I take this subject very deeply. I have a wide horizon: from french rap to acid jazz, from ’80’s synthesizers to klezmer brass or violins. Show me your books, your dvds, your cds, your bicycle and I’ll tell you who you are. It’s rather you know or you don’t know things.

-In all forms of art, inspiration is crucial. What inspires you?

The net. The people’s misery. The social-political troubles. The new media. The world of art. A few living artists.

-Before going to paint, what is on your check list to take along?

I think I adore your questions. I have my own personal “art kit”. Or assault kit. It was in the trunk of my car, in a wooden fruit box. Today I don’t have a car anymore. I carry more or less the same stuff in a backpack or in my bicycle bags. Essentially, as I do a very minimal type of Street Art, I really carry few things, never too heavy.

-Do you have an artist you admire and what for

I have respect/consideration for any pioneer of my genre. Most of them were active before 2005 and therefore before me. I am fond for “street art before it was called street art”. I guess is better to call “public art”. I give you two names: John Fekner and Harmen De Hoop. Many of today’s relevant names, are just the followers of their followers…

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-Which cities do you think are the most inspirational in Street Art?
Berlin has shitload of street art; Manhattan not. You see, I don’t look at murals as the only source of street art. Museums and galleries can be strikingly terrific. Have to say, these two cities can really open you a world; their offer is breathless. I have toured the Bowery and Chelsea in the same days as Banksy, October 2013, the whole month. Well that’s like going to school, for a kid. This unfortunately can’t happen anywhere, but the art I love can take place in the countryside too.

-Do you have other passions apart from art?
Higher than art there is only nature. You can praise this magnificent thing by walking, cycling, skiing, taking pictures or creating art: nature is the master. I do all that.

-What is your wildest project that you dream of achieving some day?

I would love to work with a land art master, such as Alfio Bonanno. A work in a desert or in a major city, having exceptional tools for doing big things, finally. Thats the crazy dream. In the real life, I wish a collab with all my colleagues that have shown some interest to my production: Tyler, Dos Jotas, Lk Prv, R1, Rage Art, David Renault, Bifido, Pao, Oak Oak… I mean, this list could be longer but some artist meanwhile became too important! (or feels this way).

-Does your art include symbolisms, messages or repeated patterns?

My interventions might contain a meaning, a message, but it’s not a rule. I repeat a few concepts, several times: decay, crisis, sustainability, logic, absurdity, reality. I repeatedly place self made ladybugs stickers around the world. Can’t stop this, it’s my bombing legacy.

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-What is your reaction when you realise someone has vandalised your creation?

haha. My works have a short life span: its very hard to get one. Moreover, I don’t sign my stuffs; therefore they can be stolen or vandalized by anyone, intentionally or accidentally. In 2009 I painted a heavy stone, evidently not heavy enough not to be stolen. My reaction was to paint another rock, but of a ton. It stayed there forever and people “vandalized” it with love messages and tags. It became a modern landmark for the whole community. I can’t care, really: all valid artists are targeted by some hater, its just a matter of time.

-What do you think people first think or feel when they see one of your works on the street?

The top question is: “what is this (for)”. Second best question is: “what’s the meaning”. Most of the people have never entered an art gallery, or an exhibition, so I find these reactions pretty understandable. Their life is only work and no play. The most of the time I walk away, without waiting for people’s attention. Sometime I stay, I perform: people go crazy; they love it, especially Americans. They ask who you are, they want to help out, they ask permission for a picture. Even cops!

– If you were a world leader what would you change?

Just for the sake of it, I would introduce the Nobel Prize “for the arts”. Art is crucial, is like science. However, it’s not about changing something, it’s about applying our changes. We know whats good; its just a matter of practise it.

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– Is there a question you think is important but no one ever asked you?

Exactly this one. I love when people ask this question! Seriously now, nothing to add.

-Do you have any interesting creative plans for the future?

Nope. I don’t know my future, if I have any or if there is some. Let’s see, I have some travels ahead and possibly some more interventions, my type of interventions, more concept and less matter. Ill keep you good guys posted. Love.

It’s been great to get to know more about the mind and person behind such talented and inspiring works. Thank you !

‘’I Support Street Art’’ team.

See more of his works here.

Check out his facebook page.

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