Jana and JS
A View from Two
RDC: Graffiti Art Magazine editor Samantha L got in touch and introduced us to a couple of artists called Jana and JS. Samantha said they were painting London and would we be interested in doing an interview? Of course, we said 'yes please'.
This is how it went down...
RDC: Hey Guys, could you tell us where you are from and where you live now please?
Jana is from Austria and JS from France. We live in Austria, near Salzburg now….
RDC: Are you both self-taught?
Yes we are. When we started painting, none of us had studied anything linked with art.
However we have learnt a lot about the stencil technique from Artiste-ouvrier after meeting him in 2005. And Jana studied the last couple of years doing multi-media art in Salzburg.
RDC: What media have you tried over the years and which do you prefer now?
We started working in the streets using stencils and spray cans. Today it is still the media we prefer.
Another essential media is photography as our stencils are based on it. Since the beginning it is very important for us to work exclusively with our photos.
So actually our final work is more a combination of photography and painting using stencils.
Since a couple of years we are involving screen printing in our work as well.
RDC: How did you both meet and when you met were your art styles totally different from each other?
We met in Madrid in 2004. We were both spending a year in Spain and at some point we happened to live in the same apartment. It was around this time that JS discovered the stencil technique. Jana was already very much into photography. We started working with stencils almost at the same time that is why we didn't have a totally different style. We developed our work by influencing each other and sharing techniques and inspirations.
RDC: A lot of your work has people with photographic equipment pointed at the observer of your murals, what is the reason for this?
Photography and the act of photographing has a great impact on our work. We always have been taking a lot of photos and at the beginning painting people with cameras was kind of an illusion to that. We also liked a lot the mises-en-abîmes and reflection games between our paintings and the observers.
RDC: How is your London trip going and what are the highlights of your trip, also have you had any trouble with the law yet?
Yes we are in London and have really enjoyed it! We spent quite a lot of time around Brick Lane and Shoreditch where we painted a few pieces. Fortunately, we didn`t have any problems with the law. And except for the rain it was pretty nice painting here!
RDC: Where did your idea of 'Reconstruction of Facades' come from?
The city is a huge inspiration for us. We have been working on urban landscapes and architecture details since the beginning of our collaboration (and even before). Facades were already very present in our work.
In our studio pieces we have always been working a lot with wood. We started playing with all the leftovers and figured out that it was very interesting putting together the different parts and thus adding a third dimension to our canvases. We also liked the idea of creating imaginary buildings by combining windows from various actual facades.
RDC: What city do you like the most to paint in?
We like a lot to paint in the eastern Europe countries, because we always had the feeling that our work really fits with the environment. It was very cool doing stuff in China too… It was kind of an adventure. We also love to paint in Paris especially in the neighbourhoods where we used to live. Till now we enjoyed painting in every city we have been to… and there are still lots of other places we want to go!!
RDC: Are you into fast food or home cooking?
We're pretty much into home cooking.
RDC: Would you like to say thank you to anyone?
We'd like to thank Fin Dac and Ben Slow, who helped us to discover a little bit of London!
RDC: Thank-you to both of you, it was great to meet up, all the best and enjoy the rest of your visit.
More from the Dynamic Duo... HERE