If walking through Barcelona, Cancun, Miami, Ostend or Los Angeles you come across a mural with the whole range of oranges and a bunch of cool grannies, then there’s no doubt about it. You are looking at a work by the Catalan artist Marina Capdevila (Falset, 1985), one of the most international artists in our territory and one of those who has managed to make her work a recognizable sign of identity throughout the world. Full of energy, vitality and an overflowing positivism, Marina draws on irony and humor in her works where her elderly characters break all aesthetic canons. About to open her latest exhibition at Madrid’s Furiosa Gallery this Friday, September 4th, we talked to her about artistic references, her favorite places to go and some of her most iconic works.
Your first memory painting… I used to go almost almost every day to my great uncle’s studio, it was the first time I painted in oil and I was very little. I was doing hyperrealism and I learned the basics of drawing, painting… I’m not sure I could even do now what I was doing at 9!
The last thing you painted on the street… The wall I painted in the Nau Bostik in Barcelona.
Street or studio work? Both are necessary for me. The street is where I get all the adrenaline, it gives me energy and so many improvisation factors appear that help me solve in a different way. The studio is where I get to find myself, it’s a balance.
Your color? The coral colour is the one I always use in the backgrounds of my pieces. It’s the color of the walls in my village in Tarragona, it’s very present in the facades of the houses.
Who would you like to do a collab with? With Antonyo Marest. We’ve been saying this for years now but we never do it.
An artist that you admire… Franco Fasoli. I met him the first time I went to Miami in 2014, and we met again in Montreal. He was one of the first people I met off-screen, Iwas already following his work on Instagram! He explained to me all of his day a day ‘battles’ in the painting world, told me about all of the trips he had done painting… Then he came to live in Barcelona and I got to follow his evolution process very closely. He has always inspired me a lot and given me very good advice.
A less known artist with good projection… There is a girl I follow on Instagram who I don’t know in person. She is American and lives in Barcelona, Emily Eldridge. She puts a lot of energy into it and is doing a lot of walls. I think she’s getting a lot of recognition lately.
A painting style… The abstract art, which although I don’t practice it much I’m daring myself to go explore a little bit into that direction. I like the way everyone is able to find their own meaning, the color combinations…
The work you’ve enjoyed most? I usually enjoy all of them, otherwise I wouldn’t do them. I think it’s so nice all of that teamwork, the people helping you… Especially when I paint in more vulnerable countries where people gives you everything the can. I always end up crying a little when I finish my walls (laughs).
And the one you feel the proudest? A floor of an abandoned radio station on the Costa Brava area, Radio Liberty. I’m proud because I managed the whole work by myself and Delabrave helped me filming and making the video with incredible drone shots. I went from wanting to paint a normal wall on a Saturday to go hard and start painting a floor. It was very cool!
An funny fact at work? In my first year in Miami I spent a week painting a wall and I made a fool of myself by leaving at night to take the photo first thing in the morning. Of course when I got there at 7am the next day it was all bombed out with graffiti. I couldn’t believe it… I spent two more days repairing with some friends who helped me until I was able to take the photo finish.
A turning point in your career? Miami 2014 indeed. It was my first time going to Art Basel. It was the first time I would go out and meet a lot of people who painted and were living out of this, being able to see the whole process of each one of them… During that trip I met a lot of people who in the following years opened a thousand doors for me.
Did you have a mentor? My great-uncle as in the classical and academic form of art but my friends in the part of doing murals and getting advice.
Your work in three words… Ironic, exaggerated and funny.
And your personality? Cheerful and positive.
A place to paint… I’d like to paint a wall in every country in the world.
A special spot for you… The beach in Tarragona. Is where I connect with my family’s ancestors.
The last book you read… “Love After Love” by Marc Pallarès and Laura Ferrero. It’s illustrated by Marc and I love it.
A movie? “Lots of kids, a monkey and a castle”. I was amazed.
A series? “Luis Miguel”! (laughs). And I liked “Versace” a lot too.
What music inspires you? I listen to a lot of Brazilian music from when I went to Brazil. I made a list and I’m still adding songs. I also love listening to ‘reggeaton’ when I paint walls, it encourages me a lot. Soul music too… Oh! 40 Classic Radio! I like to listen the radio a lot to get into work.
A Museum or Art Center… I really liked last year’s Untitled Art Fair in Miami.
A special painting for you? At my parents house we had a Dali print. I was so impressed when we went to his house and saw that what we had at home, even though it was still a print, came out of all that. It was so beautiful.
A wall? On one to my trips to Mexico I was with Bordalo and my head exploded when I saw how he made the wall. It was big and they were there screwing all the scrap into the ground. I saw the whole process of how he collected the junk around… Very cool!
A bar where to find you? Any of the Plaça Rovira in Barcelona, where I live. There are three bars so I will be in any of them.
If you had to chose a meal? French fries. I could eat French fries all day.
What do you fear? To die! I’m very afraid of it.
Any fixation or obsessions? I like silence when I work.
What can’t you stand? Fake people.
Alone or in company? I like solitude working in the studio and also like spending a lot of time alone, going to the beach… But I like company when I travel, painting walls is more fun between two people.
How do you waste your time? I’m very slow and I just waste a lot of time in general.
A goal… To be able to live off what I do, and make money to have a cool studio and paint lots of walls.
What are you working on right now? At the Furiosa Gallery exhibition which is opening on September 4th. It’s a duo show with sculptor Mico Rabuñal.
Your ideal future… A small wooden house in a coastal village with studio that has a giant window were I can see the sea. Sooner or later!
A mantra… Have fun and enjoy everything you do.