Drago Interviews

INTERVIEW WITH DIAMOND

by Alice Ghinolfi

Rome, 90s. I know that at that time you started writing on the walls. Why, how, where, when: tell us anything that comes to mind and that you feel like sharing about those years
Rome in the ’90s: it could be the title of a film – for me it felt like it. Every day I found myself in absurd situations, between metro depots, abandoned stations and along the tracks…All of this because I had one great passion: spray painting. All of this characterized my adolescence and has also conditioned it from a human standpoint, including fights, run-ins, and unpleasant encounters with the police. In short, in the ’90s Rome was quite the fun!

Rome, 2018. How do you organize your work today?
These days everything is more peaceful. My work consists of an intense email exchange, to brainstorm new ideas and projects, and a paramilitary organization when it comes to making new walls. Professionalism and attention to detail have taken the place of instinct and improvisation.

Roma caput mundi. What’s your relationship with the Eternal City?
To answer this question I will rely on Wolfgang Goethe’s words:
“It must, however, be confessed that it is a sad and melancholy business to prick and track out ancient Rome in new Rome: however, it must be done, and we may hope at least for an incalculable gratification. We meet with traces both of majesty and of ruin, which alike surpass all conception. What the barbarians spared, the builders of new Rome made havoc of. When one thus beholds an object two thousand years old and more, but so manifoldly and thoroughly altered by the changes of time, but sees, nevertheless, the same soil, the same mountains, and often, indeed, the same walls and columns, one becomes, as it were, a contemporary of the great counsels of fortune; and thus it becomes difficult for the observer to trace from the beginning Rome following Rome.”

Sibilla Pubblica by Diamond, Selci, 2016
Hic Sunt Adamantes, big city life Roma, 2015

Have you ever considered relocating for work? If so, where and why?
I always thought of moving elsewhere, but not for work – simply to live better. I’ve always loved and grew fond of the Northern European countries. Perhaps in Flanders I would fulfill my dream: there is a magical atmosphere there…

What’s the “secret to success” for a street artist?
Honestly, I don’t know, I’m not even interested in racking up my brain trying to understand it. I only know that most of the artists I love are little known, therefore not contaminated by the “success epidemic”.

Why do you think the media attention is all focused on the urban context lately?
All the attention is focused on a phenomenon that, even though it’s been around for a while, many still find it difficult to understand and define. So the greater the misunderstanding, the more people will talk about it, describing and decoding every aspect. Just like when we talk about football: we all act as we were coaches. In this field, everybody is a critic/connoisseur/expert…

I might run the risk of sounding repetitive, but I’m too curious. Tell us the name of an artist from the past that inspired you and why.
There’s more than one; in fact, there are man – among the most beloved ones is KOLOMAN MOSER

Who’s a contemporary artist you appreciate?
KIM JUNG GI

Social media: yes or no? Pros and cons of the great instagram/facebook dilemma and how do you use them?
Social media? Yes, unfortunately. I say unfortunately because sometimes, when I read comments and status updates on various profiles, it feels like being on the bus at rush hour…I use them to promote my work every day, taking advantage of its “healthy side”. As for the rest…Step back!

What are your suggestions for youngsters who may want to become street artists when they grow up?
My advice is always the same: before becoming a “street artist” or an “artist”, in general, LEARN HOW TO DRAW.

Soul Diamond by Diamond, Satka steet art festival 2017
Sorella Morte by Diamond, Cross The Streets, 2017
Cross The Street Von Vacano Drago Publisher Cover
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CROSS THE STREETS

  • Author: Paulo von Vacano (ed.)
  • Format: Softcover
  • Pages: 288
  • Date of publication: April 2017
40,00
Roma Omnia Vincit JBRock Diamond Drago
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ROMA OMNIA VINCIT

  • Author: Diamond, JBROCK
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Pages: 40
  • Date of publication: 2011
  • Language: English
30,00
Scala Mercalli Street Art Drago cover
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SCALA MERCALLI

  • Author: Gianluca Marziani
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Pages: 208
  • Date of publication: 2008
  • Language: English, Italian
40,00

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