Marta Grossi aka Banana Graffiti [Hong Kong]

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Every banana has a simple and unique canvas,  and every banana is different

This is an open experiment based on a very cheap and ordinary support

I customize my banana during the night. I have my banana for breakfast the day after

This is a temporary space and love to prove that inspiration is everywhere

Somebody already said – I have my art for breakfast

When and how did you first become interested in art/graffiti?

I have always been interested in art since I was a little girl.

This has affected and influenced my studies and my all career and current work. Graffiti style it’s just a different expression of the world “art” but I guess I began to know something when I was in middle school. I like the way graffiti is related to the street, the center and intersections of our lives.

Which artist influenced you?

For Banana graffiti I had no specific influence, I just got inspirations from my daily life episodes.

I know so many are thinking about Andy Warhol for the sharp colors and the banana for velvet underground, and I’m honored to be related to his work. But I had different tastes for art that resulted in my years of study, training and career. In my teens I was fixed with Renaissance, I had notebook full of drawings, details of eyes and hands. I was in love with Michelangelo, and amazed by the study of the body, proportions, and perfections. Then later on I had my Klimt, Robert Doisneau, Katsushika Hokusai, Banksy, Helmut Newton, David LaChapelle period… and more!

What style is your work?

I consider my work unconventional, ironic, meaningful and carrying a story. I’m free to use a different style every time; in this case it’s graffiti art style, other times could be painting, digital, hand sketch, vector or simply a mix of everything! My style is changing and growing with me every day.

What influences your artwork?

I always found inspiration from simple and ordinary things. A signal on the street, a song, my friends, a tender and elderly couple at the park, soy sauce stains on a table. Everything can be inspirations and change our perspective. I love to see things from different angles.

What do your pieces usually focus on?

My focus is to “say something”, the technique and method are only part of the execution, my tools.

I want to deliver a message and I’m lucky I can do it through my art and reach out to people.

I like to transform very common or trivial things into a new life, decontextualizing experimenting, mixing old and new.

How long have you been an artist?

I guess I always been an artist within, but people are starting to recognize me and call me like that in this particular time of my life.

Have you ever collaborated with other artists?

Yes, the best part of this work is to collaborate with creative people and other artists.

What influenced you to use a banana as your medium?

Banana Graffiti project officially born seven months ago, but the original idea started when I arrived in Hong Kong, so in my mind was there for at least 4 years. If you live in Hong Kong you deal with a super humid and hot weather most of the time, I started to eat a lot of bananas, it’s an amazing source of potassium and energy. I used to buy a lot of bananas and take it to the office. One day at the wet market I saw bananas written with red marker, to indicate the price, and when I went back to the office I started to write my colleague’s name or make little illustrations to customize bananas. I though banana because I always have 1 or 2 in my bag, is cheap, organic and easy to find almost everywhere. This is the first time I used an organic support for my art and work.

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