Interviews | owlschoolcrew | 29-12-2020

Owl School Crew is a group of artists from Barcelona and Terrassa who are bonded by their passion for transforming the urban spaces in which they live. Formed by Jay Constanza, Mitus Art, and Sergi Alegre, they met in the Gràcia neighborhood, Barcelona, where the group was born.

Individually they do different things and come from different fields: design, art, programming, psychology ... They are trained in various areas of the world of graphic communication (drawing and painting, classical illustration and graphic design) although they mainly use drawing and illustration as a means to express ideas to the world. One of their latest works has been on Wallspot walls, within the framework of the Extinction Jam, where they made an intervention to make visible the blue iguana, a Caribbean animal in danger of extinction.

We can see that the owl is an animal present in different of your works, you even have it written in your artistic name. What role does this element play in your artistic career?

The owl perfectly channels the spirit of collectivism and represents us for several reasons:

It's nocturnal, like graffiti artists in their beginnings (bombing spirit). It is a symbol that guides us, that gives us its identity. We imagine it as Minerva's owl, who sees through the shadows and from on heights, enjoying a privileged point of view. We also like its wild and natural connotation, not governed by rationalistic human patterns. Since in our psyche, there is the nonconformity and the transgression of the one who thinks that everything established as 'normal' is suitable and not suitable in equal parts and therefore has to be questioned. We also consider that the owl symbolizes the city of Barcelona, a city of which we are proud and which is always present in our work.

On one of our walls, we can see your work '' The Sowlness City ''. What is the message you want to give through this artwork?

The word 'Sowlness' itself is a word-game that sews 2 meanings: 

On the one hand, it reminds us of the word 'Soulness', and on the other, it introduces our 'Owl' identity again, implying that the city lacks the soul that Owl School contributes. The city appears as an arid, dry, and sterile element, it represents a dehumanized polis that is totally displaced from life and nature.
We can also see how its architecture is twisted and there is a point in which the location where a door or window have to go turns out to be illogical.
In fact, we would like to paint a second mural that would represent the city transformed by the Owl School owl, which would revitalize the city, bringing life and color.
And the truth is that painting this mural was very hard. Calculating and drawing the lines in perspective was a challenge that we overcame. We counted on using a projector to quickly ventilate the drawing of the city and be able to paint organic elements that would embellish the mural. But it could not be. So we use a pencil like traditional painters. We spent 2 days drawing the artwork.

Would you like to recommend an artist from the platform that you have followed or that calls your attention?

We really like the work of Inventura Studio, we believe that we have a lot in common, both by theme and by visual language. We also love the work of Maria Gargot; it is impossible to express more with less. We would also like to mention Kamil Escruela, Alchinesse and martantares.

As active users, what would you like to see on the Walspot platform that it doesn't have yet?

We miss being able to comment on the photos of the murals and be able to create feedback with other artists or groups. It would be nice to be able to search for users within the ranking.
It would also be good to review the places where we paint to see if there are fountains, bathrooms, etc., and where they are located exactly. We mostly paint with a roller and brush, and we need to be able to wash the material as we work. We would love to have access to even larger walls, facades where we can plan large murals, although we know that in Barcelona these walls are expensive… And, by asking (laughs) to have premises where you can store the material in case you have to paint several days in a row, as is our case very often.

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

Totally. We believe that you do a great job on an artistic and social level. The fact of having legal urban spaces where painting promotes art in all social spheres makes it easier for artists to create synergies between them.

IG: https://www.instagram.com/owlschoolcrew/

Sergi Alegre: https://www.instagram.com/sergialegre_id/

Mitus Art: https://www.instagram.com/mitus.art/

Jay Constanza: https://www.instagram.com/jayconstanza/

WEB: https://www.mitus-art.com/the-owl-school-crew/