Most of us discovered you during your residence in Paris.
What did you do before ?
Before moving to paris in 2001 I was
a freight bomber in California. I tagged the Name Above,
Freights. I was and still am a huge fan of American trains.
The fact that ones artwork is moving all over the country
is a good feeling. Everyone must yeild to the Iron Horse.
You are now back in California. Urbanism
is pretty different than Paris streets. Does it change your
way of working ?
For sure...The city I'm painting in the Blueprint
for my Arrow attacks. whether its wood, paint, stencils, or
stickers The city landscape is very important in Placemant
and posibilities. Paris is a beautiful city that is stacked
and very dense, opposed to most American cities that are flat
and wide spread. For example, In Paris we have the "rain gutters"
on every street that run down the side of the building. An
extremely effective object to tag, or to put up a sticker...where
in the states one is not so fortunate.
To be an American in Paris, does it
make tradespeople easier to convince to paint on their store
No its actually much harder! Most French that
I've encountered are "against" many Americans. What I mean
is that there is this grudge or un-easyness for americans
in foreign lands. The times that I would ask permission to
paint a store, the owner would ask me where I was from? I
would tell them California, and very often after I said that
they just turned their backs and walked off.
Or anyway you didn't ask any authorisation
to paint them all....?
I would say it was split 50% legal, 50% illegal.
When I would paint a store often times the cops would be called...I
would show them fake signatures, and address'. They would
look it over for about a few seconds then leave. Its funny
The cops would say " oh so your the guy who I see everywhere."
Once I had a cop ask me if I could paint his truck. I would
paint in the daytime with no fear of being caught. The cops
knew who I was and didn't see me as a vandal. I could always
work the "Dumb American" angle and explain that I had permission
but lost the papers, or there was a mis understanding between
me and the owner...In any case I got away with a lot of nice
We have seen tons of wooden arrows,
in Paris. How many arrows have you put up ? Are there long
to cut and made?
First of all thank you for keeping your head
up^ I really had the most fun putting my arrows up in Paris.
I did a total of exactly 451 in all 20 Arrondissement's. I
am very organized in how I spread my art around any given
city. I like to be "all City" with pieces of me in every corner
of a city. with Paris it was easy to do this because there
are actual arrondissement lines. The first edition of Wooden
Arrows that I placed in the city was 235. I did anywhere from
10-12 Arrows in Every arrondissement. I would work within
the arrondissement so precisly that when I found a spot to
put up an arrow I would look at the street sign to check the
arrondissement number and see if it corresponded with the
one I was in? If that arrondissment was not the same number
I would not put my arrow there. I did not want to cross over
the Arrondissement numberlines, and go out of bounds. I did
this until after all 235 were succesfully placed in Paris.
I then doubled down on the "better half" of Paris. 10 Arrondissemnets
that had a high amount of people passing bye, and constant
action. This time I had an army of 216 arrows that I pierced
Paris with. The grand total placed in Paris was 451. The hardest
thing about making my arrows was working with high powered
electrical tools. Throught trail and error I finally got to
match my marked line with my cut line. I almost made 10 fingers
dissapear into only 8 fingers. That was a close one. I would
of never thought that tagging on Freight Trains in California
would of led me to cutting wood in France. Its Strange the
evolution of style.
Do you have any connection with french
or US writers ?
YES I have a connection with all Writers. We
all share the love of painting. The risk factor, and the creativity
of one's style.
What was the first thing in your life
that you remember being really passionate and excited about?
Drawing. I remember just loving to draw.
Who has inspired you, and who's work
are you into now ? Not necessary in the graffiti world.
My Family. My Father is an amazing Painter,
and ceramasist. His work ethic and style's are very inspiring
to me. I would say in addition to him the whole Graffiti Culture
as a whole is very inspiring. I love to walk down the steet
and see someone risk their life, for getting Ups. Just people
finding the power with in themselves and to channel that energy
to street art is Powerful!
You wrote on a few stickers : "My mother
is an artist". Can you tell us more ?
My mother is an artist. She along with my whole
family are artists. We were all raised to find out our creative
outlets at a young age. My parents would tell us That "the
only way wrong to paint was to not paint at all."
Is she supportive of you doing art
My family backs me up 110%
What telephone number do you dial the
867-5309 Jenny I got your number!
What is the hottest thing in California
right now - except you - ?
The return of the Califonia Women. Just like
the French Women, the California Women are Sexy, and fun to
What are your plans for the future?
I'll be back in Europe in about a year...I just
need to finish some school here in California, until then
I'll be attacking the US of A. with some bigger more advanced
wooden Arrows, and freight bombing. KEEP YOUR HEAD UP^
ABOVE - http://www.goabove.com