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Back Talk with Paper Monster

Juxtapoz // Tuesday, 15 Sep 2009

Paper Monster is a stencil-graffiti artist whose vibrant colors and imagery pop off of the canvas and the streets. 


Up next on deck for Paper Monster is “Friends With Knives”, a Stencil Group Show that he has curated at Dirty Pilot that will open this Friday, September 18th.  For the exhibition, Paper Monster will  showcase a broad range of stencil art styles and techniques, including photo-realism, pop, and political stencil works. Read on to discover more about this graffiti-stencil artist who also happens to have a Masters in Biomedical Sciences.

How do you feel right now?


Excited and full. Just had my first burrito of the week. Last week I ate a total of 5 burritos. I hope I don't repeat that cycle.


If you could wake up in a different place tomorrow morning, where would it be and what would you do?


I would wake up in Xcaret! It is this environmental theme amusement park near Cancun that has a massive lazy river that runs through the whole park and all you wear is a tiny lifejacket afloat in extremely deep water. Beautiful place.


If you lost your creative skill, how would you see yourself making a living?


I would give haircuts. I have been cutting my own hair for 9 years now. Saves money and it looks great. I only use a machine since I have not mastered the use scissors.

If you could punch one living contemporary artist, who would it be?


I would punch Kaws, cry and tell him how inspiring he is to people. Then a massive man hug session would begin.


Was your first kiss worth writing a song about?


No, it was a bad game of spin the bottle. I think the bottle was rigged to land on the ugliest girl in the room.


At what point were you particularly happy?


The time a teacher in North Carolina used my paintings as part of her lesson plan for her art class of 7th grade student as inspiration for making stencils. She sent me emails with pictures of what they made. I felt really warm inside.

No regrets allowed, but there must have been one?


I regret not buying a four or all wheel drive car. Mazda 3 in heavy rain and snow = death trap.


What trait do your friends have in common?


They all are extremely hard workers and driven.


If you had to evacuate your home or studio, what's the one thing you would grab?


I would grab my backpack which usually has my laptop and camera. It would suck if the backpack was empty at the time.

Greatest love of your life?




What is your favorite vice?


Faces. I love people watching.


When you blow out birthday candles, what do you wish for?


Good health for myself and my family.

If you could play a character from a favorite film or TV show for a day, who would it be?


I would play the boy from that movie “Blank Check” who bought a mansion when he was in middle school with a slide and go-karts. The modern version of that in my mind is Rob Dyrdek.


Do you ever lie?




Do you think viewers understand the intent of your work?


I think they do. It is more about the experience than understanding what I am trying to say. People connect to my work in their own special way. I love watching people look into and away from my paintings trying to figure things out. I wish I knew what they were thinking.


What virtue can you do without?


Fitness. I think that one can go out the window

Do you even notice when you're swearing?


Yes, when I am in public it is so hard not to swear. In private it is pretty much one giant swearing fest. I need to keep that under control.


What has been your proudest moment?


Getting my Masters in Biomedical Sciences. I graduated with a concentration in Stem Cells and Pharmacology.


What would you like to be remembered for?


Your name and body of work is worth more than any amount of money you will ever make in your life. I want to be remembered as a source of inspiration.


How would you prefer to die?


In a battle and then shot out into space in a floating coffin.



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