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Meet the artist: DaFredo

When did you first start painting? Were you born with a paint palette in hand, or did your interest in art develop over time?

I’ve been drawing ever since my time in kindergarten. Though at secondary school I excelled in drawing and painting I did not make it to the art school and decided to pursue a technical carreer. During my study and working life in the years after I always kept making artworks in my spare time, until in 2017 I seriously picked up chalk, pencil and brush again.

Was there a moment when you decided to follow your path as an artist?

In 2017 experimented with chalk on black canvas and realized I still had my talent when I painted my dog.

How can you describe your own style and technique?

I love to expperiment with materials, so it is definitely not one specific style. The thing that most of my works have in common is that I first make a design on the computer. After that it may become a WPAP in paint on canvas (Weddah’s Pop Art Portrait), a DLAP (Da Fredo Line Art Portrait), a piece of Tape Art, or a combination of those.

The art of creating WPAP‘s is simplifying the portrait as much as possible without losing the recognizability of the person on the portrait. Leaving out details by making straight lines and planes as large as possible, while keeping it small and detailed where necessary.

And of course the use of a limited number of very bright colors which is so typical about Pop Art.

My DLAP technique originated in the summer of 2018, when I ran into a gallery of a Thai artist who practiced a very special technque playing with the thickness of lines to create light/dark effects. Back home I started experimenting to apply something similar on protraits. After several iterations I discovered the best way to create these works was using disposable piping bags filled with acryllic paint. Like with WPAP the challenge is to make it as rough as possible without loosing the recognizability.

My Tape Art is created by using gaffa tape (AKA podium tape). The challenge is having to work with a limited set of colors, which I devide into layers. After desiging the image on my computer, I stick these layers of tape on top of eachother on the canvas. Instead of painting it is by cutting that I create the final image. Keeping things simple and leaving out as much things as possible is also what makes this special, especially when working on a black background, leaving it up to your imagination to fill in the details in the black yourself.

Do you have a personal favourite piece? Can you think of a piece that was particularly fun to work on?

My favorite pieces are the DLAP’s of David Bowie, Prince and Jim Morisson. This is because the look in their eyes is so important and works out amazingly well even though the lines are kept as wide as possible.

Which artist of the past would you most like to meet?

Though not an artist of the past I’d really like to meet Shepard Fairey. His murals and the messages in his works are very inspiring. Also impressed by the size of the projects he has undertaken in cities around the globe.

What is your favourite art gallery/museum and why?

Though occasionally I visit a gallery or museum I mostly enjoy visiting street art and mural projects. Everytime I visit a city I take the time to plan some tour along these “open air museums”. I’m attracted by the spontaneousness of most of these projects and the fact that they are open to everyone, integrated into the daily life, instead of somewhere hidden in a building where you have to buy a ticket.

What was the last exhibition you went to?

STEN • LEX, Rinascita, Galleria D’Arte Moderna, Rome

Which artist materials do you use and why?

I use wooden panels for canvas. For the larger works this requires a pretty laborious preparation because I mount the panel on a frame to give it the right robust heavy look.

For DLAP’s I use acryllic paint, applied with a disposable piping bag to add the 3D effect to the lines.

I have done WPAP’s in acryllic as well as in tape.

For my tape art I use gaffa tape. Though the quality varies a lot per manufacturer, in general it is way easier to apply than common duct tape and it is available in multiple colors.

Visit the website of DaFredo: