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Russian Street Artist Gives Urban Life A Facelift


The work of hoodied Russian street artist Nikita Nomerz is attracting admirers as he tries to spray-paint rundown city walls and other large urban objects to life.

He's been featured on Russian news programs for both his methods (here) and the reception of surprised residents (here) to works like "Eyes Of The City":

He was even highlighted recently by the U.K.'s Mirror Online for his "Living Wall" project, in which he transforms dilapidated brick and mortar in his native Nizhny Novgorod and elsewhere.

We tracked down Nomerz to find out a bit more about the art and aims of this budding young talent, who says he has migrated from his early studies in "classic hip-hop graffiti" to street art.

He says the goal of the endearing facial features that have become his signature is "to make a wall, building, or other object in the face, with emotions, feelings, and history."

Nomerz explains his fondness for spotting a location and getting to work right away. He says he sometimes devotes surprisingly little time to works -- less than an hour in cases.

People often don't see what's around us," he says. "But the walls are alive, and sometimes the walls see people better than we see them."

Street art in Russia, he says, "is only gaining momentum."

"We have interesting artists and projects," Nomerz says. "But for now, they are few."

Nomerz is doing what he can to legitimize street art and boost its respectability both inside and outside the circle of those who do it. "Not all graffiti writers think the graffiti [is] art," he says. "What can I say about ordinary people?"

In addition to "The Living Wall," Nomerz has a series he calls "The Colors," and he's collaborated with other artists and expanded to the columns of London for works in another collection that he calls "The Trees":

You can find more of his work, including videos, at the Nomerz website.

-- Andy Heil

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