Brightness, a game of light and shadow, reflections, optical effects, saturated and vibrant colors… Whoever comes across a piece by Spok Brillor (Madrid, 1978), has no doubts. The artist from Madrid, Felix Reboto, has an unmistakable full-color style and moves between hyperrealistic scenes that he reinvents approaching the fantastic. He has been one of the pioneer of the graffiti scene in Madrid and now combines this practice with studio work, where detail is everything and visual games leave the viewer upside down. The street has been and continues to be his playground where he experiments with twisted and complex letters, and as he says: it is in the street where one generates memories. We talked to him about his tastes, his fears and his work to discover the person behind the signature.
Your first memory painting… I have a memory of painting some classic drawings of castles and wars on paper at a neighbor’s house. I guess I remember them because my mother kept them. My first graffiti painting memory was the first signature I made in front of my front door with a marker when I was 10 or 11 years old.
The last thing you painted in the street… A wall at Abano Terme close to Padua in Italia.
Painting in the street or studio work… I’ve always been passionate about painting in the street; studio work doesn’t generate as many memories because it’s so monotonous. I think it is necessary to cultivate both, but I prefer the street.
Your fetish color… Red fluor.
Your work routine... That is my great unfinished business, I have fled from routines all my life and I find it hard to build them now.
Who would you like to collaborate with… With any of my friends. But with Mc Escher if he were alive.
An artist you admire… Now I’m very into Van Minnnen’s work.
A lesser-known artist to recommend… I follow the work of a digital artist that blows my mind called Bumpy Junkie.
A pictorial style… Abstract realism.
The work you have enjoyed the most…I enjoy more or less the same each project in which I have total freedom, then I enjoy the projects in unique places like when I went to paint in Cancun with Sea Walls of PangeaSeed and Proyecto Panorama.
And the one you are most proud of…Pride I feel for the expo I did in 2017 at Kreisler Gallery, “400 ISO”.
A turning point in your career… An event with capital letters was when I participated in the Street Art exhibition that took place at the TATE Modern in London in 2008. It made me start to believe that something could be done with graffiti.
Did you have a master? All the generations that were before me and all the people I have been and am related to.
Your work in three words? “Mazo guapo tronco” or “está que flipas” [slang from Madrid to say ‘very cool’].
And your personality? That is for others to say.
A city to paint… Barcelona.
A special place for you… Benidorm.
Animals or people? People, I never had any pets.
An animal that represents you…The platypus I guess because of how weird it is.
The last book you read? “Sapiens” by Yuval Noah. One of my favorite books is “The Innocent Anthropologist” by Nigel Barley, is very funny.
The last movie you’ve seen… I saw the last Tarantino movie last week on a plane.
And series? The last Spanish one was “Treinte monedas” and one of the favorites “Better call Saul”, I loved it. “Watchmen” is top too.
What music inspires you? Mostly space ambient and psychedelic electronica.
A museum or art space… The Palays de Tokyo in Paris has to be one of the best there is. Then the Prado has its little things.
A special artwork to you? The John Martin paintings I saw in an exhibition at the Tate Britain really broke my mind.
A wall… John Pugh’s trompe l’oeil. I’ve only seen them in networks but they are truly impressive, although a bit tacky sometimes…
A place to find you… Malasaña.
A food that represents you… Steamed broccoli.
What do you fear? Natural catastrophes specially the ones that result in the end of the world and copious dinners.
Any fixations? I have my personal processes and I am a bit of a hypochondriac. Otherwise I’m quite pragmatic so it turns out that I may not be very optimistic in general.
What can’t you stand? Certain attitudes of the collectives and argumentative polarization.
Alone or accompanied? With people.
How do you waste your time? Wasting time is related to non-productivity so I waste time in many ways, even though I actually spend all that wasted time on myself.
A goal? I try to give shape to the things I have in my head and not lose the illusion for what I do.
An ideal future… Close to the sea somehow.
What do you miss? My father.
Your next work? I have to prepare several group exhibitions for September, one for the inauguration of the new studio in Madrid and another one in Germany.
A life mantra… To define something is to limit it.