Interviews | Durney | 22-12-2020

Lobsang Durney is a Chilean artist, specifically from the Valparaíso area, the main port of his country and a city that is considered a World Heritage. He began to experiment with art when he was little, in the workshops of his father, a painter and screen-printing artist. During his youth, he was awarded in different painting competitions, recognitions that motivated him not to lose that path. Later, he studied architecture at the UTFMS, to combine the creative capacity of art and scientific knowledge. He became familiar with new techniques of representation in his university days and later. Without abandoning traditional painting, he had the opportunity to hold exhibitions, give workshops and talks at prestigious universities in his country.

Could you explain to us how was your first contact with urban art and what caught your attention of this artistic movement?

First, because we stood out in painting during school times, it was typical that we were selected to make murals or paint scenery, which made me aware and technique in large formats. But what marked me with urban art was living in neighborhoods of Valparaíso where there is almost no place where there is no urban art. A characteristic, controversial many times, very notorious of the city where he lived.

How did you get to Wallspot platform?

For Ana Blü, she had already been painting murals through this platform and when I arrived in Barcelona she recommended it to me.

On one of our walls, we can see your work ‘’Corona City’’. How do you think this sanitary crisis is affecting the urban art world? Do you think there will be a cultural and artistic regrowth when this situation cools down?

Corona city is a mural where I try to represent how globalized this pandemic is and, on the center, a subversive campfire, that aims to protest against the poverty and tension that is being generated. The health crisis has affected the slowdown in activities in general and urban art in the same way. It has limited it in actions first due to confinement and then due to lack of resources. As a counterpart and like any arrest of the artists doing, it made us think more about being, generating a space for reflection that should be reflected in a cultural reappearance when the situation relaxes as you say.

Would you recommend the Wallspot platform to other artists? How do you think having legalized walls affects a city?

In any case, I would recommend Wallspot, since having legal walls transforms an act that could be "vandalism" into something organized. It also generates knowledge, in this kind of social network, of specific actions such as painting and of many artists who could be invisible. It obviously affects the city in a good way, since it helps to see where not and where to paint legally, beyond that some can paint where they want. As the legal also calls for quality, it gives the progressive relationship between both situations. Great muralists paint only on large "legalized" walls.

How does the experience of painting on a non-legal wall change to a legal one?

First, I would say that there is the tranquility, very necessary in art, of painting a mural without the problem of illegality, that an authority, neighbor, etc. can come to ask you to stop the intervention. The second point of view can be the positive externalities of a legal wall, such as associativity to the platform that allows it and such as activities with other artists that can be generated. The bad experience can be in terms of the durability of legal wall work, since this can be confused with constant permission to paint immediately on another recently painted work, giving it a minimum time for its urban display. Freedom that transforms the walls into a no-man's-land, constantly covering with tags or graffiti of dubious quality works that could deserve more respect.

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