Talking With Quint About Painting The World

The 645: Where did you grow up?

Quint: I’m originally from Sumatra, but I grew up in Jakarta Indonesia.

The 645: What was your first job and where?

Quint: Oh, I used to be a musician playing in a band, but it was too much for me. I don’t like the attention as a person I’m a bit shy, I totally become a different person.

The 645: What instrument did you play?

Quint: Base guitar.

The 645: What job are you working now?

Quint: I don’t have one I’m just painting and doing what I want to do.

The 645: How did you get into graffiti art?

Quint: Oh, graffiti art, I used to love doing graffiti letters a long time ago, ever since I was in school.

You know like kids painting on the wall, and when I was a little boy, I’d do that and say it was an accident, but later as a teenager I was into the graffiti scene. Twelve years ago, I moved to stencil art and became addicted to it so I kept doing it.

The 645: Is that like screen printing?

Quint: Stencil art is the same technique but with different materials. I love art I have always liked pursuing any kind of art. Back then I was like a little bit depressed, you know how when you want something but cannot get it, it makes you feel a bit down.

I lived on the street for almost two years, so during that time I always liked doing some art on the street. Then one day I got an opportunity to do an exhibition, so I did it and I just fell in love.

The 645: What is Indonesia like for art?

Quint: People say if you can make it in Jakarta you can make it anywhere. (Laughs) You can get stuck in traffic for hours, but truly Jakarta is very artistic as a city, its unique. I lived in Jakarta for 6 months some years ago, it’s very nice.

Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint
Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint

The 645: So is Bali legal to perform street art?

Quint: Actually, street art is always illegal anywhere in the world man.
But sometimes, maybe only 10% of the time I’d ask for permission to use the walls, but the rest of the times, I never ask for permission.
But they are more concerned about thieves than street artists.

The 645: Who do you aspire to?

Quint: Beautiful girls, actually beauty inspires me, love can inspire me.

The 645: So you’re a romantic?

Quint: I don’t know maybe, I’m romantic but it’s people who judge it. I’m just trying to spread the love.

The 645: Who are your influences?

Quint: A street artist from France, Jef Aérosol, I like his work. Banksy of course.

I used to live on the streets so I didn’t know any other artists back then. I was just doing what I love.

One of my friends, named JMX, who taught me about stencil art, he was an influence as well. I don’t know his real name. I haven’t seen him in 20 years but he inspired me a lot.

Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint
Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint
Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint

The 645: Would you agree that your work shares similarities to Banksy?

Quint: Yes because it’s the same technique, not the same idea but just the same technique. But to me, stencil artists or street artists are not just Banksy, but

he came at the right time, the right moment, and he was the one who made street art more mainstream.

But I did this year before I knew who Banksy was.

I don’t really like when people call me the Balinese Banksy, because it’s the same technique but we have different ideas. He’s more political, whereas I’m more about beauty and love.

The 645: Why Monochrome with splashes of red?

Quint: I started this because in my country and in my city, we didn’t have a lot of choice of spray paint. So back then we had a couple of local brands who did spray painting without a lot of colours. Monochrome’s easy for me to find, ss I wanted to do this all the time, for continuity, so black white and grey anywhere in the world. Then there’s red, it is the signature, it represents the love for the heart, as I always put a small heart.

The 645: Do you ever use colour?

Quint: Yes, my latest exhibition I’m exporting colours but still monochrome colours. Black, blue, red and white.

The 645: Wall or canvas?

Quint: Wall.

Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint

The 645: Is there pressure when performing in front of a live audience?

Quint: I don’t really care if people look at me when I work, at least when it’s a legal wall. But when I create art on walls on the street and people watch then, that worries me, because I wonder if that’s the guy who owns the wall or are they going to call the cops.

The 645: Is there a message in the work?

Quint: Spread love, spread beauty. Kill the hate.

The 645: Where around the world will we see your art next?

Quint: I would like to go to Barcelona, I have never been there. A different city that I would like to do art in.

The 645: What is the significance of the red rose?

Quint: It’s more about the flower, my idea of red roses, fake roses last for eternity, whereas a real rose lasts a week. So, in my work, the rose is red and represents love, beauty, and eternity.

Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint

The 645: How about music? What’s your intake on that?

Quint: Recently I like this girl named Soko, my girlfriend found her on my computer, so we listened to her.
I was like who the f*ck is that? She started playing the music and we have been listening to her ever since.

The 645: Do you have a favourite tag to date?

Quint: I love every piece I have done. Well, you see bigger is better and I really like to paint women. Recently I painted out the girl with the invisible gun, that’s so far my favourite.

The 645: Do you have a muse?

Quint: Women represent beauty, I’m trying to spread beauty and love.

All the women I paint I’ve met spontaneously, like at concerts. You can find beauty in the shittiest of places. It all depends on how you look at it. It’s on the spot raw.

The 645: Favourite book?

Quint: I don’t read books. (Laughs) More podcasts. I try to read books but after 5 minutes I get bored and tired.

Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint
Exploring the streets of Bali, the art, and the work by Quint

The 645: Do you any favourite dish or food, in general?

Quint: Not spicy for sure. I really love meat, any kind of meat.

I don’t like vegan food. (Laughs) Indonesian food, because I grew up with it.

The 645: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Quint: Oh tough question.

I don’t know where I’m going to be next year. I like spontaneity, I really like travelling. At this moment I’ve been living in Bali for nearly 9 years.

I was thinking to move somewhere else.

But 5 years, I don’t know maybe Australia, and hopefully for my work to be better than where it is now. (Laughs)

I want to do my artwork in more cities around the world.
I’d like to spread my art around the world.


Words: Tatyana Chmaissani
Photo: Ioannis Koussertari