Lectrics: You are basically a writer from Paris, but you are living in Berlin since a few year already. Could you please first introduce you and your activities in the graffiti game, especially in France?
Brone: After a year or so tagging on the Paris streets, I did my first piece in 1988. From then on I started to focus on the art of writing and its subtleties under the name of BRONE aka BOMB REVOLUTION .ONE. In my quest of discovering this culture ,I traveled all around: NYC, Sydney, Berlin, India….
All those travels opened my mind , and gave me a vision of who I want to become! A graffiti artist!! In France I am well-known for writing on the streets and subways, but as an autodidact I always did some style experiments and pieces on the side.
Today with nearly 40 years old I gained on maturity and got a good knowledge about this movement.
Lectrics: There is for sure many differences between your start and now in the street activities of Paris. Could you please tell us what your first impression is when you are now coming back to Paris?
Brone: When I am coming back to Paris, I can see how things have changed! There is a complete new generation of writers which has not necessarily something to do with the hip hop culture. Streets are cleaner and the focus is now on trucks, rooftops and tunnels, wich are over spray. The styles are globalized, because of internet you find guys who had some handwritings like the msk from L.A. or paint like the Berlin guys. Just TRANE and few others old-timers are keeping alive the Paris touch.
Lectrics: Do you mean that Internet was not the best thing for the graffiti?
Brone: No internet is a good media,but it change complitly the game.Nowdays you don¬¥t need to burn all the city to be welknown .In my time the streets was my girlfriend, you had to be everywhere to put your name up and get some respect from the others. The internet generation spend more time with a laptop doing their own promotion on the net and magasines , playing hardcore bombers when they did a scrap train or a throw up in a graffiti jam..
Lectrics: You have the chance to paint in two of the most important graffiti places in Europe: Paris and Berlin. Do you think we can compare this both cities and what are the differences for you in term of styles, atmosphere ‚Ä¶?
Brone: Berlin reminds me Paris in the 90¬¥s, but because of its political and social status there is less do or die attitude than in Paris.
Life is actually easier and cheaper here. They did establish some kind of Berlin style compare to the others German cities. Coming from the 2nd generation of European writers, I know perfectly our history and can see the influences and sources of those 2 cities.
The Berlin style is based on the old school NY style and had also a strong input from the BAD BOYS CREW (BBC) and JAY1 in particular who lived there from 1988 until 1996.AMOK and SHEK was inspired by all this and became themselves the most influential style writers of the city.
The Paris style is based mostly on the Bando letter style (which influenced all Europe with SHOE from Amsterdam), the BBC, Jonone for the freestyles and Mode2 for the characters.
Those pioneers got themselves their influences from Dondi, Tkid, Seen and the NY old school!! It means that in my eyes Berlin or Paris style doesn`t really exist. What exist it are some individuals which are interpreting the NY graffiti style with more or less success.
Lectrics: But every European scene got influence of New-York. Does it mean that for you New-York is the only one “real ” scene ?
Brone: Yes the real influancial sc?©ne for sure.They have the flow and spirit in their pieces.New yorkers are masters in letters.¬†I see so many guys here which try to be wild with doing 1000 arrows in the pieces or abstract form between the letters.¬†They don¬¥t understand that wild style is about mechanism and flow,how the letters are connected together and how they are flowing.
Lectrics: It seems that you and a lot of Berlin old timer are back. In 2009, I see lot of walls and I got the feeling that you and the others have like a new start. Do you confirm?
Brone: No actually it is not a new start or come back, because I never had a break with painting. But it is true that I also recognized that some writers which was gone for the last 15 years are back on track. Nevertheless 2009 was a really good year for 156 crew Berlin and me.
Lectrics: Could you please tell us about these old school meetings and this motivation to paint after so many years?
Brone: I will not say that it is some old school meetings it is more some guys who respect each other‚Äôs concerning their styles, has the same kind of levels and like to paint together. The motivation to paint is still strong due to the fact that I love graffiti and it‚Äôs never ending ways to express myself with it.
Lectrics: You have like two very different styles when you are painting. The first one is a very classic graffiti style and the second one is more abstract. It‚Äôs two direction of painting. What are your pleasures to paint one or the other style?
Brone: Those styles are not different but more complementary. Since Jonone came to live in Paris it became a tradition here to paint freestyle. It is also a 156 trademark to paint this way. I am also down with TNB so I have the best example to follow for the lettering. I like to be complete and to do everything it‚Äôs just depending on my mood.
Lectrics: Do you still sketching, studying and developing your style?
Brone: Yes of course it is important to find new styles and go a step forward. So I do sketches and study but not on black books mostly of the time on simple papers.
Lectrics: You participate on the big event Urban Affairs in Berlin and you made a canvas with JayOne. Could you please tell us about this experience?
Brone: Jay and me are representing the same crews and had the last 10 years many opportunities to paint together. With him, skki and toxic we also founded a group of painters together L¬¥ECOLE DE PARIS GRAFFITI
So naturally we did this collaboration on canvases and showed the painting at URBAN AFFAIRS exhibition.
Lectrics: Could you please tell us more about the L‚ÄôEcole de Paris Graffiti crew?
Brone: It¬¥s a group of painters wich has the same background and share the same visions about , asthetics, painting, and graffiti art.
Lectrics: In France, many old timers are doing canvas and lot of auctions and exhibitions are organized. After many years painting walls and subways, it‚Äôs time for them to make money with the graffiti. Many writers could easily understand this and some not. What is your position with this? Do you plan any exhibition in the next future?
Brone: Good for them if they can earn some euros. After the hype will be the reality just the best will survive. Yes i have a group show wich called T.A.G LES LETTRES DE NOBLESSE in PALAIS de Tokyo middle of February where I will present a recent work.
Lectrics: What kind of¬†canvas do you will present?
Brone: I will show a painting with a character on it ,so it is figurative.
Lectrics: It‚Äôs maybe a common question but it interests me to have your opinion on this: A few years ago, to paint, you had to be introduced in the graffiti scene, you had to understand the code and the rules. Now this is accessible for everybody. What is your felling about these changes?
Brone: Graffiti and hip hop became mainstream. It is positive and negative in the same time. I am personally always more on the side from quality than quantity. But for sure like in every generation there will be some good writers which gonna bring some fresh air to this art form, they just have to do their homework and to learn their lessons ;)‚Ä¶
Lectrics: Last question: do you have something to say to the readers of the interview?
Brone: Don¬¥t be a clone and keep it real . To my crews 156,TNB,WIB,TPK..
Lectrics: Thanks for your time.