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MontanaCans LOOKBOOK 2021

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5 We didn’t take it

5 We didn’t take it seriously because it started on the other side of the planet, and we always think when it is far away, it wouldn’t impact us. Laia 6 But let us rewind to a time before masked faces were a common sight in the broad public. We asked ten Graffiti artists with diverse backgrounds about their personal journeys throughout the year 2020. From Asia to Northern and Southern Europe, from East Coast to West Coast in the United States, we spoke to enthusiasts from all over the planet. Enjoy insights by Alone (Italy), Cloak (Malaysia), Func (France), Kae (USA), LaFranz (Italy), Laia (Spain), Pheo (Denmark), Post (USA), Ribes (Italy), and Wane (USA). REALITY CHECK “We didn’t take it seriously because it started on the other side of the planet, and we always think when it is far away, it wouldn’t impact us,” Func says. The Paris resident quickly changed his mind, though. “I wasn’t scared at first... But I quickly started to remember all the dystopian movies I’m watching all the time and thinking it could be the end of days,” he continues with a smirk, seemingly trying to take the critical situation with humor. Laia and Func address what probably a majority can relate to. Disbelief, refusal, derealization, or feeling like being in a bad movie. With the omnipresence of technological devices, an abundance of information is guaranteed. Whether on news broadcasts or social media, updates on recent developments are available at all times. While this might accelerate global developments and business, there is also a downside. More information does not create more order. The universal law of thermodynamics describes this as entropy. Thus, more than ever, one needs to be media savvy to process the plethora. “It seemed like the world turned 16 Montana Cans Lockdown on lock

upside down overnight, and the future became so uncertain. In the early days of the pandemic, there was so much misinformation floating around out there, so it was really hard to know what was true or false or even know what to expect next,” Wane says. 7 FEELING TRAPPED – DOWNSIDES “When the pandemic was starting, it seemed all normal; I kept on as usual. However, as time passed, much negative news came. ...I started to demoralize myself. I had so much free time but at the same time very few opportunities,” Ribes admits. The native of northern Italy faced a struggle of many. With increasing precautions and restrictions, individual freedom got limited. Social interactions had to be reduced; people were forced to stay close to their homes to stop distributing the virus. As a result, many perceived themselves to be deprived. “I felt trapped as a lot of things couldn’t be achieved,” as Cloak from Malaysia puts it. “Most of my Graffiti tours and spraycations were put to a halt, and there was a lot of uncertainty,” he continues. “To be honest, I wasn’t mentally prepared for the pandemic as well as the lockdown as I’m someone who is outgoing and always loves to create new pieces outdoors.” Almost everybody was confronted with similar problems like isolation and constraint. Over time, not simultaneously, with regional variations, as waves of infections created constant ups and downs. A rising number of cases was usually followed by amplified measures and vice versa, creating a limbo. I had so much free time but at the same time very few opportunities. Ribes 5 Cloakwork taking it back to basics in the black book. The beauty of drawing is you can do it at home and refer to it later. Anywhere, at any time. 6 LAIA dropping a different take on a classic character. This time E.T. with some attitude. 7 RIBES showing that the show must go on. Locked down or not, if you earned a spot in the game you have to maintain it. 8 With less happening on the street, POST using all chances offered to him to get over. Apart from physical wellbeing, also mental health gained importance. A lot of people dealt with fear, uncertainty, and a decline in motivation. “...When I try to remember those two and a half months [referring to the first lockdown], the memories are hazy in my head. Every day was exactly the same, and obviously, I couldn’t paint,” Laia states. “The last wall was kinda weird, saying goodbye to your friends for a while, entering a very dystopic future,” Func adds. “The city [was] in fear. So people were locked in. The streets were kind of deserted. I went about life as I usually do, but with a mask on. Graffiti wise the pandemic brought a lot of people out. People that were already doing their thing started going harder. And people I’ve never seen up in my life started doing bad Graffiti all over the streets. A lot of businesses had to close, so they let the Graffiti run on everything for the most part, so it was like 10 new writers a day were born. Shit kind of took the essence out of it for me,” Post reveals about his experiences as a resident of New York. 8 Montana Cans Lockdown on lock 17

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