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I try to break the rules with impossible-to-mix color schemes – Interview with MUSA

Painting for almost three decades, Barcelona-based Musa keep blasting out new pieces and sketches in a constant stream, always bending and twisting her letters into new shapes and looks. If you like stylewriting, it is a pleasure to follow her work as she paints her way across the globe. We caught up with her in between her paint missions and daily graffiti work, and guess what, she also looooves graffiti!

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ILG: Please introduce yourself.
Musa: Hi, my name is Maria aka Musa71, Maria, Venus.

ILG: How did you start and where are you today?
Musa: I’m from Barcelona, but I did my first piece in Madrid, in 1989. Before that I did a few latex pieces and tags… I learned about graffiti from a classmate in school who goes by the name of Kapi, one of the original writers from Barcelona who was always sketching during class. I was curious and didn’t have any clue what it was about. One day on my way to school I saw a man facing the wall, spitting some colors on it and I thought it was some kind of magic! Later I found out it was Futura 2000, and from that moment I fell in love with it.

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ILG: You have painted for many years, and you are still very active, why?
Musa: Why not? It makes me happy and I feel that everyone should do what they can to be happy. Also I met some great people, that made my world bigger and better.

ILG: What crews are you in, and how important are they to you?
Musa: Actually I represent 5 crews.
FHJ (Fucking Hell John) with Dilk, Sunk, Cryone, Flai. We are friends/family. For me they’re home.
Black Magic (Hen, Noise, Nexie, Sher, Crime, Fons, Ovas, Jank). We are friends and we are all old writers that have been painting for a lot of years.
TFP, you know, it’s an honor to be in a crew like this. It’s a pleasure to always learn something from the history of graffiti and to share moments and walls with such talented writers. Pure style.
TDS, same as above.
Fours. (Eskae, Harrybones, Hoacs, Jat, Rask, Roachi, Scan, Sear, Soten, Trace1) We met in the last years, but we connected through Miami Art Basel and Roskilde Festival. We are very involved and passionate about graffiti, crazy in a very positive way. We encourage each other to do more and better. It is very refreshing.

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ILG: Whats it like for you to be painting in Barcelona?
Musa: Well, I love my city. I watched it grow and change from being easy to paint everywhere to just the opposite. Now there’s a window to paint but mostly for the street art. I have watched people quit, and come back decades later. My city is always alive, even in the hardest moments against graffiti there was always plenty of it. For me, I try to adapt myself to the moment and paint as much as I can.

ILG: You paint both walls, canvas and paper, is there any differences for you?
Musa: Yes, there are some. Normally I don’t spent more than some hours to do a piece. I think it is important to paint fast and do a decent piece. On paper and canvas I don’t have this priority, it’s like a meditation. Also, I experiment with different colors, styles, ideas and even mediums.

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ILG: Colors, you use many different color combinations in your work, how do you come up with them?
Musa: Some of them I have seen on random advertisements, movies, records, basically anything that has color and inspires me… I try to break the rules with impossible-to-mix color schemes. Some others appear while I’m dreaming, I dream a lot, very crazy dreams and I love bright color combinations that make your eyes bleed.

ILG: Social media, how do you like them, and how do you use them?
Musa: I work on social media, so for me it’s good because I can see what people are doing, and show what I’m doing. Of course there’s always an ugly side, but it’s like most things in life, if you uses it wisely it’s all good.

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ILG: Travelling, what memorable places have you been, and where do you plan to go?
Musa: I love travelling, and get to know different ways to do things, and people. Every place has its charm, but a notable one is Hawaii just because it’s a paradise, and I had a really good time there with my friends. Miami is always fun and stress and good weather. Denmark, Roskilde is crazy madness, people painting as if was the last day on earth. I smile every time one of those memories comes to mind. Mexico challenge you and I love that too, but I also I had the opportunity to swim with turtles in Cancún. (I love turtles). The thing is, for me it is healthy to change scenarios, and cultures, and meet new people and old friends. It makes you grow as a person and writer. This year I have traveling on my mind but I’m not sure where to exactly just yet.

ILG: Inspiration, what makes you paint, who inspires you?
Musa: A lot of things, my friends and family, sci-fi books and movies, funk music, other artists and writers. I try to make my letters dance, or fight. I try to imagine that they have personality, and they are somehow the reflection of my mood.

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ILG: How did computers, smartphones and the internet change graffiti?
Musa: They make it faster, for the good and the bad. I like to communicate with friends that live really far from me, and technology make it easier and better. Maybe we blame the internet, cause we miss the old times, but I think this is one of the things that make you (mind) older.

ILG: Describe a regular good day for you?
Musa: I work for MTN Colors at the communication department. My work in not under a specific schedule. So I combine my own things with it during the day.

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ILG: Have you got a motto for graffiti?
Musa: Well, I don’t know if it’s a motto, but I don’t like people telling me what to do, (I accept suggestion and advice, that’s different), graffiti is about to feel free even when failing.

ILG: Do you love graffiti?
Musa: Like the first day.

ILG: Thank you for the great ilovegraffiti sketch!
Musa: You’re welcome!

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Meet Musa online:
Instagram: @musa71_
Facebook: Musa71

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Posted: 23. Februar 2017