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The first street art festival of its kind in New Zealand, Graffiato: Taupo Street Art Festival captures the diversity of mural painting practice, and what’s new and relevant in global urban culture.
Graffiato's ever-expanding portfolio of over 80 murals brings transformation, wonder and vibrancy to the urban lane ways and streets they inhabit. Even locals continue to find surprises hidden away down these charming back alleys.
An exciting collection of renowned New Zealand artists was secured for the 10th annual Graffiato: Taupo Street Art Festival held in Taupo’s town centre last Labour Weekend, 23 – 26 October 2020.
Well-known New Zealand artists Chimp, Erin Forsyth and Haser were among the headline artists attending the festival last October. Three of the ten artists in this year’s lineup had attended Graffiato in the past, and all brought a unique style of muralism.
Erin Forsyth came coming back for what was her fifth year at the festival. Erin was at the inaugural event in 2011 and over that time her work has continued to develop and evolve, with several different styles in her toolkit to draw from. She is currently making waves as a botanical illustrator and publisher and is regarded as a senior female figure in the mural community.
Haser is a graffiti artist who has risen from the grassroots beginnings of tagging his local West Auckland streets to becoming an artist whose works reside, not only on urban walls, but behind frames. You may recognise Haser’s work from Burger Fuel’s around the country, where he worked in-house as both a graphic designer and graffiti artist. 2020 marked Hasers second appearance at Graffiato.
SWiFTMANTis is from Palmerston North and is also a tattooist by trade, this was his second time attending the festival.
Chimp is a New Zealand born street artist, whose style focuses largely on experimentation with different styles and colours within public and private commissions. The subjects for his art range from birds to portraits, abstract objects, and personal motifs. Based in Wellington, Chimp often combines several of these styles to create contemporary pieces of art that are unique to his ‘post- graffiti’ style. 2020 was his debut at Graffiato.
Ushy Ushy is an artist based in Hamilton and Melbourne (currently in NZ during Covid-19). He has exhibited in the Waikato, Bay of Plenty, Coromandel, Auckland and Melbourne. His works are vibrant and dynamic, influenced by 1980s-90s sci-fi films and street art with a variety of artistic and pop culture references. He works his neo-pop style across a variety of surfaces that can be seen on the street in mural form and in galleries. 2020 was his debut at Graffiato.
Margarita is a multi-disciplinary self-taught artist based in Auckland. Her work is often autobiographical and a reflection of explored landscapes and cultures making a strong connection between her life and art. Margarita was exposed to a variety of environments from rural Siberia to the warm shores of Crimea as a child, eventually moving to Auckland in 1999 and much travelled since. In recent years drawing inspiration from time spent living and traversing North America. 2020 was her debut at Graffiato.
This was GEMBOL’s first time painting at Graffiato. Her work is inspired by all things nature and loves to paint flowers and portraits. Primarily working in spray paint as a muralist and stencil artist, she is developing her style and exploring other mediums.
Auckland based artist from Hamilton who was at Graffiato in 2016.
Auckland based artist known for crisp comic book style artwork. 2020 was his debut at Graffiato.
Artist and designer based in Auckland, New Zealand.
Originally from Australia, Caitlin has lived in the Coromandel since 2004. She is a well-regarded ceramics artist who has also forged a path creating public murals. 2020 was her debut at Graffiato.
Tāne is a Taupo local, and this was his sixth time at Graffiato. Tāne draws inspiration from graffiti, hip-hop, wildlife and history and is passionate about raising awareness through his art.
10 years as BMD, this is the new solo path. This was DSIDE's third time at Graffiato.