The emptiness is actually what drew me to the area near the Silos in Manchester in the first place–I’ve spent a lot of time exploring and photographing in the area. So I never imagined I would really get to see the area filled with so much life.
I quickly realized that mural painting wasn’t the only activity breathing life into the area: I saw the band Horsehead play a killer set, a buoyant parade march through the event, children painting the best abstract work I’ve seen all year, and the influence all this was having on everyone there.
I’m lucky to have had the pleasure of getting to know more about some of the artists that helped make all this possible but more, I’m proud to be a part of a city that takes art and diversity to amazing places.
Louise Chen (aka “Ouizi”) was kind enough to ask my friends and I for our opinions on the finishing touches of some her flower designs as she was caught between using spray or brush strokes. It felt great to have an influence on her work, as little as it may have seemed.
Ouzi said she was listening to Good Times by Jamie Xx when I first met her and mentioned that she generally likes upbeat tunes when painting.
When I first saw Dennis Pereira, he was painting with one hand and holding his trusty spiral notebook with the other. When I asked him about it, he flipped through the worn pages and showed me his initial sketches for his work. He explained that in the beginning of his process, looking at his notebook and having the perfect outline is very important. When asked about colors, he said that he had them all ready in his head.
Meeting Mariano Arrien-Gomez wasn’t a question. Not only was I drawn to his geometric style but also he was rocking a huge pair of headphones and had a DSLR camera on a tripod behind him while he worked. When I asked to take his photograph, he asked me to snap one with his camera as well. He then explained how he would stop and make a photo every time he would take a break because he was also interested in seeing process. I liked his framing so much that I even tried to make it my own.
Mariano was listening to Kendrick Lamar’s Bitch Don’t Kill my Vibe, as performed by Sly5thave & the Clubcasa Chamber Orchestra and generally likes heavy beats and instrumentals when working.
I approached Matt Lively and Hamilton Glass when they were close to finishing their collaborative piece. It was really interesting to witness how they explained to each other what they both envisioned–coming together on the final aspect of their piece, the rocket ship.