q)Please introduce yourself.
a)My name is Marvin tiberious
q)Where do you live and work?
a)I live in rock city Milano, I work
in rock city Milano and in
different countries of
q)How would you describe
your work to someone who has
never seen it?
a)My work is based on a the Powerfull
tenderness that is used institutionally by
Rennasaince people and naturally by
street people. I try to mix and study
the two approaches to life and line.
q)How did you start in the arts?
How/when did you realize
you were an artist?
My mother was a Contemporary dancer
and my dad was a hitchiker, I grew up
in an artists squat so I suppose art was
just like a favorite coat always in my
q)What are your favorite art
materials and why?
a)I like every thing out there, I recently
went drawing on the street with a sugar beet,
it really stays on cement but only lasts
like 3 drawings and then becomes like
a fleshy mush.
q)What/who influences you most?
I really like my friends I paint with
or sing with or hop trains with, these
little poems that people give away are
better than any Van Gogh or internet
q)Describe a typical day of art
making for you.
Holy shit dude, eat one banana together
with five people on the top of a Naples
ghetto while painting a huge figure, mixing
everyones styles and the neighborhood
Postman who keeps his goats in the abandoned
school we climbed to the top of comes round
with a rifle but ends up giving us a bunch
of bread and goat cheese
q)Do you have goals, specific things
you want to achieve
with your art or in your career
as an artist?
a)I never think about this, my mother
really gets on my ass about this and some
important people have told me to have goals
and specific plans but then you walk out
into the streets and it's like a freestyle poem
much bigger than you or the way you walk so
lets just hold on to the term career and try
and focus on serious things like line or
color, yeah I'm fucked.
q)What contemporary artists
or developments in art
a)I like to be exposed to many details,
I think many contemporary movements and
ideas have values that are only expressed in
application but are never questioned to that
point so you just have to appreciate a detail,
most of the developments that have touched me
profoundly have come from poor honest people
being themselves and thus questioning everything.
q)How long does it typically take
you to finish a piece?
a)My process is very random because I have
made paintings that are
80 metersx 12 meters
in the middle of a three day rave party and I
lost like 5 hours plotting to kill the dj but have
also made little cutsy hand sewn baskets to
hang in the street with my grandma which took
like an hour to make but like 4 hours to install
because the security guys were all on my
ass so I really cant say, variable!
q)Do you enjoy selling your pieces,
or are you emotionally
attached to them?
a)Yeah I like to sell things because I am a
volcano, I live in a house of creations that is
waiting to explode, sometimes I think if I make
one more drawing the entire building will sink,
I am attached to some things but then I think that
I am more attached to the smell of the metrò in
Paris after they clean it, if I had a bottle of Paris
metrò smell on a hot August night I would'nt
even sell it to the best gallery goon on earth.
q)Is music important to you?
If so, what are some things
you're listening to now?
a)I play the saxaphone, my grandmother
was so poor that she would give us a song for
christmas instead of presents, she'd teach
you every note and word at the kitchen table
on christmas morning, music is the soul of man
and his only explaintion for many things
philosophy dances around. I listen to everything
except everything, there is alot of NON music going
ItalyI think music does'nt exist,
not on the radio or in the street and bars anyway,
I really like the "red worms farms" from
a)I read a bunch of stuff in two languages because
I find books on the street in Italy, I got a few spots
behind book store where I know on Wednesday
there are free books, this wednesday I found a crazy
book by a french accademic from the 17th century
who explains how the popes were the first rulers to
use a new kind of mental force and not physical force
and how this lead to Rennaisance painting, I was reading
this shit on the Milan subway and pissing my pants
because I did'nt have a ticket and was thinking how
to explain to the controller guys that a subtle chain
of historical dogmas had sucked up my ticket money
but they never asked.
q)What theories or beliefs do you have regarding
creativity or the creative process?
a)I like to think that it's all good but seriously there
has to be discipline and willingness to listen, these
are the most difficult things to nurture
q)What do you do (or what do you enjoy doing)
you're not creating?
a)My girlfriend says I talk in my sleep about new
projects so it's fair to say that I dont really rest so
much but I like to get some shitty beer and dance
my ass off or talk to tram drivers about the Milan zoo,
that's what this guy the other day said about San
Lorenzo square, "a fuckin zoo" he kept saying,
"there's every type of animal." It's just a square full
of drunks but after he said it was the "
zoo" I liked Milan
to imagine how every type of animal would hang out
looking for weed and sex. I guess I like that normal
ordinary poetry goin round.
q)Do you have any projects or shows coming
up that you are
particularly excited about?
a)I am gonna do some shows in old laundrymats
during mi-art, I got some official shows in May in
San Francisco and in June in Naples and Milan, I am
hoping to be on the streets for awhile, I'm doing some
projects about immigration and local identity in Milan,
even though I'm a bastard foreigner I pay rent so
kiss my meneghin ass.
q)Do you follow contemporary art scenes?
If so, how? What
websites, magazines, galleries do you prefer?
a)I like to look at magazines at a big bookstore in Milan,
or shows in big galleries, I have'nt found one big thing
that totally gets me interested, I like the little things,
the details are nice, I think alot of people that get big
are worried about their perfect ass and aint shakin it,
we only live up to 70 or 80 years so I dont understand
all this defending of territory or substance, I think like
90 percent of scenes are defence walls so it seems like
a waste of energy to get to that 10 percent of discussion,
I know alot of people who love to defend, I think this is
a contemporary measure of beauty but far from timeless,
so yeah I like textbooks, free books and talking to bums.
q)Ask yourself a question you'd like to answer, and
a)Hey Marvin, what is Urban Identity and how
fictional is it's crisis? I think if you hang around
cities enough you learn that colors and economic
backgrounds are a common denominator that
arrive to a certain point and then the Polis is just
an innaccurate collective of interests like getting a
beer or feeling the closness of skin, the warmth of
something real. Using terms like Urban to describe
aethstetics or a form of poetry is just a packaging
much easier to live without, if we want to really explore
the nature of cities we should be prepared to spend
enough time together inside of them to realize that
most of street life is fiction, its like Puccini out here
still,we're chasing that dream, that diva or lucky star,
America or BROOKLYN!, Urban Identity is not a rap
star thing or a marketing status. It is who is doing
the dishes or running your local venues, Urban identity
is you particpating and being aware of how
you are participating.
q)Any advice for aspiring artists?
a)It is REALLY important to encourage others
and the small things that they give away, one of
the most amazing things about art or this type of
sensibility is that it is all, so believe in all, make
your distinctions not to be above something but
to be in it, BE IN IT! be in your city, be in a conversation,
be involved to the point of singing, crying or painting
yourself away to a common voice that REDUCES
INSECURITY for all. I do'nt know if I have ever achieved
such a thing but it is enough to try, this is my only way
of defining art, enough to try, enough to try and open
all the ways of being here, not to be right or wrong but
to have a lot of fun with alot of people, alot of
interpretations of the same line or thought that I thought
was mine but is really, all. So yeah, get funky with the all,
don't close yourself in gallery or punk or profit or prophet,
do it all, no lifestyle is infinite!
q)Where can we see more of your work online?
aI been doing lots of video art here: