Is this an exciting time to be an artist? It seems like there are so many opportunities to show your work, have it seen by people. Forever it was all about galleries, then street art and graffiti leveled a certain playing field, and now there are so many brand projects that give you another outlet. Is it all fun right now?
JonOne: Yes, it’s definitely an exciting time to be an artist. My work has evolved a lot since I started out on the streets and in the subways of Harlem. I’ve transitioned from working exclusively in the public domain during my youth to today focusing on more installations and shows at galleries and museums – from the streets to the canvas. Opportunities such as this new wall in Miami are really exciting for me to get back to my roots. Whether it’s in a museum or on a subway car, art should be everywhere – it’s for everyone. Brand projects such as the one I just worked on with Perrier have the power to bring my message to new audiences in a big way.
You had a busy year in terms of exhibitions and gallery work. Any highlights?
One of the biggest highlights would have to be the release of my book – JonOne, The Chronicles. It traces over 30 years of my work. My wife was an integral part of producing the book, so it was a very special collaboration. This book, charting my artistic evolution and career, will allow people to see my work in an entirely new and different way.
Talk about the Perrier project? They have been working with artists a lot in recent years…
It’s a pleasure to work with Perrier because it’s a such a prestigious and iconic brand with a long history of supporting the arts. This past year I worked with Perrier to design a limited-edition bottle design for their “Inspired by Street Art” collection. It was an amazing collaboration, including myself and two other artists from the international street art community – Sasu, from Japan, and Kobra, from Brazil. This mural in Miami is a really cool continuation of our work together this past year.
How is 2015 working out for you? What do you have coming up?
This past year I worked on an art installation and video to raise awareness among the youth of France about the issue of homelessness throughout the country. The project gained a great deal of momentum and as a result, I’ve been invited to create a new piece of art to hang in the Assemblee Nationale in Paris. I am one of only a handful of artists to enjoy this honor. My work, blends elements of traditional and contemporary. The unveiling ceremony will take place on January 21st.
For more information about Jon One, visit jonone.com