Being hyper active in Amsterdam for nearly three years, we followed their work closely since the beginning. It was always well executed, placed in nice visible spots in the city and showed their eye for composition and detail. There are lot’s of stencil artists out there and it is not easy to stand out by just cutting holes in paper and spraying paint through it. The “two Swiss”, as some people call them, surprised with a good portion of extra skills and always presented a twist in their work – from being provocative to storytelling to political to expressing a local identity of Amsterdam to being unique.
Long story short, we always could discover something special in their art. But honestly, their new show really surprised us. There is definitely an “Evolution” visible in their work, regarding style, technique, composition and ideas. A good reason to have a little chat with them about their new show, Street-Art and plans for the future.
Urban Art NOW: Your new show “Evolution” is a big step up in your career. Tell us the story and ideas behind the show and about the concept for this new exhibition.
BustArt & Zaira: Evolution was the first show that was really properly planned by us in advance – we had 6 months to create new artwork. Our goal was to create something new, something we had never seen before. The plan to create our own citys was in our mind for a long time. When we got the chance for a solo show at GoGallery, we put our plan in action and started cutting stencils of houses, trains, cars, people and much more for over two months followed by a series of test sprays. Until this moment, we did not know if the outcome is as we expected it to be. Luckily, it turned out even much better than we thought of and from this point on we continued to cut stencils until we couldn’t feel our fingers anymore.
Urban Art NOW: Everybody can definitely see that you spent countless hours cutting stencils, planning out designs and creating super detailed compositions. Your new work and style has the potential to shuffle up the stencil world. Where did you get your inspiration from?
BustArt & Zaira: For our new series of artwork we take inspiration from the cities from this world, we mix up old and new architecture of different places that we visited during the last 10 years. In the artwork, we fill-up “our cities” with Graffiti and Streetart in order to create our own Utopia. It was important for us, to fill the cities on canvas with our own art and not just random stolen Graffiti. Every Tag, Graffiti or portrait shown in each painting has its own history and story.
Urban Art NOW: Compared to three years ago, your style and artistic expression developed a lot. What gave you the boost to get to the next level with this exhibition?
BustArt & Zaira: We both make Streetart for over 9 years now. All I know is that we grow from day to day with our style and techniques. We always push each other to the limit while creating each new artwork.
Urban Art NOW: Your show “Evolution” is not completely a solo-show. You invited a few other artists from Amsterdam to participate. How come?
BustArt & Zaira: As this is probably the last show before we leave Amsterdam, it was important for us to realise some collaborations with friends we made during the last 3 years in the city. All the artists have a different background and way of working, but all of them work in the streets. During these collaborations a small dream came true as these artists are a big inspiration to us past and present.
Urban Art NOW: Street-Art is bigger then ever and you have to stand out each time from a mass of other stencil artists. What keeps you moving?
BustArt & Zaira: Our goal is to be better than the rest and this motivation comes probably through the Graffiti background of BustArt. When we create new work, we prefer to have it bigger, better and with more detail than the art we know from others. For example, artwork of our recent show “Evolution” has up to 150 different stencil layers only in one painting.
Urban Art NOW: Having accomplished your “Evolution”, what comes next? Any plans for the summer and beyond?
BustArt & Zaira: We do have some big plans for the future, but first we have to sort out where we going to live after the summer. Then we plan to do some more travelling and realise more gallery shows in Paris, London, and New York. Our first stop will be Stroke Art Fair in Munich. There, we are invited to participate in live painting and of course, we will enjoy a couple of big beers.
Urban Art NOW: Thanks for the interview and see you at Stroke Art Fair!
Video: Making of “Evolution”
Photos exhibition opening
Photos (c) by Wolfgang Joosten