We recently caught up with the two directors Veli & Amos of a new documentary “Style Wars 2“. The film celebrates it Dutch premiere at Urban Art Festival Amsterdam. The two directors will be present at the event and engage with the audience and other guests in a panel discussion after the premiere.We are really looking forward to this event, as this is going to be definetly exciting!
About Style Wars 2
Style Wars 2 is a Graffiti documentary produced by Veli and Amos, a Swiss-Slovenian artist duo. The movie is a sequel of the cult movie “Style Wars” from 1983 and gives an update on today’s Graffiti and Street Art scene, in a very unique and entertaining format.
30 years after the release of Style Wars, the movie that helped spread the graffiti movement from New York around the world, Veli and Amos, the producers and main protagonists of Style Wars 2, hit the road to discover new graffiti styles and meet the artists behind. A wild journey takes them from Europe to New York and the Middle East, from galleries to war zones.
The movie is a well-quoted homage to the original Style Wars movie and at the same time tells the personal story of Veli and Amos. Even though the movie’s main focus is on graffiti, it approaches the topic in a much broader way, and also alludes to politics, art and lifestyle.
Small Talk with Veli & Amos
Urban Art NOW: For those that don’t know you, who are Veli & Amos, and what inspired you to do Style Wars 2?
Veli & Amos: We have been working as an artist duo since 2008. We both studied art and we regularly present our work in galleries all over the world as well as in public space. Style Wars 2 is our first feature film.The only inspiration to do a project like this came, when we first saw the Style Wars 1 film. We used the quote the movie over and over..We started to film our friends at first and then slowly a story developed organically..
Urban Art NOW: Can you explain the significance of the original Style Wars?
Veli & Amos: Style wars is a cult movie.Everybody who cares about graffiti has seen Style Wars or Wild Style.
Urban Art NOW: What has been the general response (then) of two guys from Slovenia and Switzerland making a sequel to a movie that holds such an enormous cultural relevance?
Veli & Amos: We watched Style Wars so many times that we knew it by heart. We saw parallels and relations between 30 years before and today..We were motivated to capture the styles and philosophy of contemporary and old school writers. By exploring those connections we found new stories and positions that are not present in Style Wars.
Years ago when we showed the first raw cut of the film to Henry Chalfant, he was sceptic about it. But after watching it, he just fell in love with the project and since then he is supporting us..
Our close friends thought its a joke because it took us so long time to finish it.
We could also see the public response after we published 2 trailers on Youtube. Many people didnt’t believe its happening, they thought its impossible to make Style Wars 2. If we look 5 or 6 years back, we would probably think the same.. But we did it!
Urban Art NOW: You guys did make sure to have all the OG’s on board, when can we expect Style Wars 2 to be available worldwide?
Veli & Amos: During the past 5 years, we filmed over 100 hours of footage, simultaneously developing the story board, with support of our friends and editors Jan Gassmann and Adrian Aeschbacher. The movie was realized without support of a professional production company nor a big budget, instead we founded “No Money Production. Style Wars 2 is our personal view on graffiti today, our aim was not to cover or make a statement about worldwide graffiti.We are still searching for right people who are interested to distribute the film in their own countries or world wide.
Urban Art NOW: Last question: what is the craziest adventure you guys had while shooting the Style Wars 2 footage?
Veli & Amos: We had many adventures its hard to pick up one. Meeting Henry Chalfant, Blade, Seen of course. Our personal travel adventures, struggeling and sneaking through without money. But probably our trips to Israel and Palestine were the most intense..