Stencil Artist Profile – Damien Mitchell

Stencil artist, Damien Mitchell, who was a finalist in the 2012 Stencil Art Prize (then known as the Australian Stencil Art Prize), has moved from Melbourne Australia to Brooklyn NYC where he’s making a noise on the streets.

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1. How did you get into making stencil art?

Around 2003-2004 I was working in a house paint shop in Wagga Wagga in regional Australia. Having lots of free time and ready access to cardboard, knives and some very shitty paint, I began cutting basic stencils. Getting up around the town is tough when you’re the only one painting stencils so soon after that I moved as far away as Icould to Prague in the Czech Republic, where the soviets had left a lot of cement slabs ready for some art.

2. How would you describe your style of art?

The art I create varies from place to place. I like to create site specific work that builds off the existing architecture. Last week I bought an inflatable dog and squeezed it between the gaps of a welded closed box near my house. Once inside I blew him up and arranged him with chopsticks through the holes. This kinda work makes me smile, it’s temporary, fun and depending on how you want to look at it, can carry a message.

3. Where does your creative inspiration come from?

I guess walking around, especially at hours where you don’t see a lot of people lets you see spaces in a different way. Inspiration can come from anywhere from conversations to dreams to contemplation. If I knew how inspiration worked it would make this art thing a lot easier.

4. Describe your stencil making process – how does an idea move from being an idea into a finished artwork?

NEVER! my process is something I keep to myself. That said I get a lot of tips from house and garden shows and magazines.

5. What would be one piece of advice that you would give you young artists starting to explore the stencil medium?

Work hard, paint often and screw up. Sometimes it’s our mistakes that open up new ways of approaching a problem. (hahaha, I sound like a motivational pamphlet) but in all seriousness, some of the best discoveries happen when you stop looking and start just playing around.

116 Brunswick Rd - 2012 Stencil Art Prize Finalist
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Glasses
Dollar Bill
Blue Face
Installation

"116 Brunswick Rd "
2012 Stencil Art Prize Finalist

 

Check out Damien’s website here.

Check out our other Stencil Artist Profiles here.


HOW TO ENTER THE STENCIL ART PRIZE

2014 Stencil Art Prize entries are now open. You can enter online here. Entry costs $25 and there’s a $3000 cash prize.

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