Interview with 9219 2112 street artists
Anyone who walks around Szeged with their eyes open has surely already run into it 9219 2112 to the works of a street artist. His self-made stickers and posters can be found in many places in the city, and when he is not active on the street, he creates comics or captures his works on canvas. He thinks it's cool that you're walking down the street and there's something you've designed or drawn. It's a punk genre, from graffiti to figurative things. There is no gallery, no curator, no professional jury, you just press until it feels right.
When did your first work hit the streets?
2016-ban, egy egyetemi projektben kellett logókat meg illusztrációkat terveznünk, csináltam egy boroscimkét és rájöttem hogy bármelyik nyomdában tudnak matricákat nyomtatni és ez volt az amikor elkezdtem agyalni, hogy mikkel fogom szétbombázni a várost. Nyilván visszatekintve kis gagyi dolgok voltak, de Shepard Fairey-nek éreztem magam amikor sunyiban kiraktam az első matricámat a Reök előtti villamosmegállóban. Fent is volt sokáig és személyes sértettséget éreztem amikor valaki lekaparta… 😀
Where did the stage name come from?
Everyone used to ask this, 9219 2112 was more of a group than a person and the basic concept was that the sticker or poster should not be put into context by the name or the titles, but that it should be interpreted on its own and not have to rely on aesthetic and art historical knowledge. anyone can interpret what they see, even if what they see is depressing or disgusting.
How did this style develop and what would you call it?
Wow, that's a good question, the stickers are made digitally, in vector format, which is very good because you can zoom in and out, it won't be pixelated, but there was also a photoshop drawing and a 3D model. So far I have called it aggressive minimalism, as I don't use colors much, everything is black and white, contrasting and brutal. However, the presentation of the graphics is not so minimalist, because I like to get involved in the details. So, good question, but unfortunately I don't know the answer. My subjects are usually pretty evil, but there's nothing satanic about it, it's just how I see the world.
Who or what inspires you most to create?
I think I got to know this subculture in a fairly traditional way, I went through the basic stations, Exit through the gift shop and the basic Banksy, Space Invader, Shepard Fairey craze. I also liked stencil printing for a while, but I was always pretty lame at it. Then among the Hungarians, the Roham magazine graphic artists caught my eye, their sick style really caught my attention, Attila Stark, Levente Szabó, Zsolt Vidák, András Baranyai, they printed this Robert Crumb-style underground comic, and of course Jamie Hewlett (he drew Gorillaz ). Locally, of course, when I came to Szeged, I was fascinated by the doll heads (Optik) and the Csiky stencils, and in general, the fact that there is such living street art in other places besides Budapest. There are many Hungarian faces that I like, such as Void, 0036 Mark, Hermit and many others, now they suddenly come to mind.
What motivates you to go out and create under the cover of night?
Well, recently the night guerillas stopped a bit, also because of the virus, and I had to get some air, my own style started to become suffocating, I didn't want a big change in this project, but I reached my limits. I'm not saying that 92192112 is gone forever, but now the focus is on something else. I'd rather work on fewer things in more depth. That's why I do other things: comics, paint, and of course I do this too, but not everything goes out into the street anymore. But if someone asks, I will gladly send them stickers or posters. I'm making a graphic book right now.
Have you had any conflicts with the authorities?
Yes, everything has happened, arrests, "sleeping" at the police station, interrogations, house searches, confiscations in several parts of the country. But the sticker and the poster are quite a gray area from this point of view, so it never became a big problem. But I think anyone who deals with this kind of thing should be prepared for this.
Do you see street art as a hobby or a livelihood?
It would be nice to make a living from it, but I think it would be quite difficult. Although I have managed to sell and exchange many things, I am personally quite a collector. I like the works of my contemporaries, I have Void, Talkr. Also my Robolution print. So it remains more of a hobby, or rather compulsion is the right word for it.
How expensive is it to make each of your works? How can you finance these?
There was a period when tens of thousands went there every month. We always solved everything with a fairly homemade method, thanks to which we managed to remember a lot of good tricks. The 9219 2112 stickers are basically PVC stickers that hold up very well outside, I think they will still be out there in 10 years, but they are expensive, they have to be varnished and if you are not careful they can melt into the printer. ? The basic method wasn't the huge number of copies anyway, once Robolution said that it prints 600 stickers, here it was more like 60-100 from a series, and there were even some of which there were only 4-8 because we wanted less, so that there would be a little extra added value because of this , that it is not outside at every bus stop. But it has also happened that the Two-Tailed Dog Party was financed by a larger Szeged, street art project and then you could use public money to see the works of almost 10 local faces, including ours.
What do you think of street art?
Nyilván szeretem, mert különben nem csináltam volna eddig. 😀 Nagyon fontosnak tartom, mert független, bárki csinálhatja és publicitást is kap. Emellett vagány, hogy mész az utcán és ott van amit terveztél vagy rajzoltál. Egy punk műfaj ez, a graffititől kezdve a figurális dolgokig. Nincs galéria, nincs kurátor, nincs szakmai zsűri, csak nyomod amíg jól esik. Szóval igen, jobb az utcára dolgozni, mint az Instagramra! Mi történhet? max leszedik.
How do you see the current situation of the subculture here in Hungary?
Maybe things ran aground a bit now because of the crown, obviously you can't just stay overnight like before. I trust that the creators prefer to work at home and have not stopped. However, more and more faces younger than me are starting to make stickers, which is good because the continuity of the thing remains. I would like to see that my old stickers are not scraped off, but that they are covered by more talented and younger artists than me. I met a little guy recently, he's still generic, he wrote that he likes the 9219 2112 stuff, he also drew for me, he got a unique pack, so there's hope.
What is the most memorable story that happened to you while exhibiting your work?
Wow, apart from the aforementioned incident with the police, I've been called out on how cool this is, but perhaps the most memorable was when I climbed without any insurance to put up a giant sticker about 10-12 meters high on the downtown newsstand in Szeged. (Don't let anyone do this after me!) There was another good one, when I was sitting on the tram with painted hands and I saw a couple of guys looking at me with piercing eyes, I thought I was going to be stabbed on the spot, then they called me and it turned out that they were going to a sale, in one of the suburbs, I gave them a patch and a sticker.
What would you say to those who are just getting to know the genre?
Press until the nose bleeds.
Whom would you like to thank for supporting you in choosing this form of self-expression?
Well, it's funny, because personally, my family knew when I printed all of this, my grandmother's closet is full of my junk. But of course my friends also helped me with materials and company, we did an exhibition once, it only had my works, but it ran under the name 9219 2112 and I got a lot of help there, so thank you: Á, Cs, G!