Interview with Milo Project

Milo Project - Street Art Paris

Tell us a little about your artistic background and why did you get into street art?

I started with illustration which for a long time was a way to develop my ideas. Then I discovered the world of graffiti as an observer. The reappropriation of urban space quickly caught my attention. I realised the potential that urban space offered to artists. My first interventions in the street were painting and stenciling. I quite quickly felt frustrated by the technical limits of painting. There was a gap between my desires and the 2-dimensional technique. I then considered my work in volume which opened up an infinite number of possibilities for me.

Milo Project - Street Art ParisArrows series. 

Milo Project Compression series number 05 - street art parisSérie de Compression, numéro 05 (2019)

Where and when did you post your first street piece?

My first intervention in volume was in 2010. I magnetised a character on a large column (The UFP project) in the Beaubourg district of Paris, it was winter in the middle of the night in the rain! A good memory !

What pushes you to paint works in the street?

I chose to work in the street for the diversity and freedom it brings me. What interests me is the free and popular aspect of this art, this reappropriation of urban space to offer a different look at the city. I like my work to be seen by everyone and not exclusively by an audience of connoisseurs.

Milo Project - Street Art Paris

Milo Project - Street Art ParisInvisible Minority series. [Stickers by SUPE.]

Tell us about your process for producing artwork?

I start by having an idea, a feeling to express (the subjects generally revolve around the same themes) and I try to find an image that expresses this idea most accurately in my opinion. Then the part that is sometimes the most complicated is figuring out how to make this image. I spend a lot of time looking for manufacturing solutions. Many projects have not seen the light of day because I do not find the result very satisfactory. On a project that I am carrying out in the street I am developing five which will end up in the trash.

Milo Project - Street Art ParisExit series.

How do you choose your locations and how important do you think context is in your street art?

Context is everything in street art. Without context, form takes precedence over meaning. The story that tells an installation changes depending on the places where it is installed. I spend a lot of time scouting to try to find places that are relevant, that work visually or historically with a project. I look for an interaction between the place and the installation.

Milo Project - Street Art Paris

How do you feel when one of your rooms is ripped out, repainted, removed, etc.?

I have no problem with that, on the contrary. It’s part of the very definition of street art, which is ephemeral art. The volume in the street is much more ephemeral, so for it to be valid over time you have to think first about its transcription, that is to say in my case photography or video.

Milo Project - Street Art Paris

Tell us about some of the reactions people have had to your work on the streets. What do you like about coming to work in Paris?

It’s very interesting to get people’s live reactions to installations. As I stay there to take photos I sometimes have the opportunity to speak with passers-by without them knowing that I am the author. I discovered that the interpretations were truly multiple. On an idea that I wanted to express, I realise when talking to people that everyone interprets a work with their own experience, history and sensitivity. It opens me up to new perspectives on subjects I work on. Exchange is essential, that’s the advantage of working in the street!

Milo Project - Street Art ParisSwitch series.

Aside from walls, what other surfaces do you enjoy working on and what has been the most unusual?

I don’t have a favorite surface. I adapt to my original idea. I have already tried to do an installation in the middle of a lake using a boat. It was a character sitting on the surface of the water, the experience was quite amusing but technically a nightmare.

Tell us who are your favorite street artists?

There are quite a few urban artists that I find interesting like Brad Downey, Spy Emmanuel Bayon, Escif, Mathieu Tremblin, or my good friends Jim and LORK who are great Parisian artists! But my influences mainly come from other horizons such as sculpture, painting and video such as Bill Viola, Gehard Demetz, Theo Jansen, Choi Xooang, Anthony Howe, Francis Bacon or Jacques Brel.

In your opinion, what is the importance of street art?

Street art in all its forms is necessary for the good mental health of our society. It’s free and popular and should stay that way. I like to come across a piece by chance in the street that makes me stop for a few moments and think, question myself on a subject whether poetic, political or philosophical, whether it extracts me consciously or not from my daily life.

What are your plans for the rest of 2015?

Lots of new projects in the works. In the Paris metro and in the city!

Milo Project - Street Art Paris

Milo Project’s website, here and Instagram, here.

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