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Brooklyn Street Art

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Lakwena, JM Rizzi in Process at No Limit / Borås: Dispatch 2

Posted on September 5, 2017

This week BSA is in Borås, a municipality in south-western Sweden for the 3rd edition of No Limit, a mural arts festival that brings Street Artists from around the world to create new works on walls of the city, in the process enlivening public space and creating new ways for this historic textile merchant town to engage passersby with their city.


Swedes love to talk about Swedish weather, especially when explaining the famous winters and the grey days that are causing muralists to try and paint in between the rain drops in Borås right now. Aside from Gemma, who is painting inside the Swedish School of Textiles on the university campus, everyone else is painting outside, which means a cloudy, cool, and rainy day presents a particular set of challenges. But this group evolved from the modern graffiti/Street Art scene, so unless there is a police officer involved, the rain won’t stop the party.

Lakwena. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

The sun-drenched Dallas based abstract contemporary painter JM Rizzi may be a bit more in shock because he has just been scoping out the enormously long wall he will be painting along with a local assistant from the high school named George, who used to do a little graffiti of his own before he moved here from Croatia a couple of years ago.

Rizzi says he’s excited to do the largest wall he’s ever done and he is taking this rain day as an opportunity to sketch the outlines of his composition while George runs across to the other side of the river to look at his progress and text any feedback.

Lakwena. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

Meanwhile Lakwena, the vibrantly graphic textologist from Hackney, London has her heart set on improvising her wall and is channeling the messages she has been receiving from in inner world to decide what aesthetic direction her wall just off the main street of Allégatan.

She tells us she’ll be free-styling this time around, allowing the spirit to move her and taking inspiration from the lyrics of her assistant and talented musician sister Abimaro, with whom she’s been talking a lot about the importance of process in creativity.

Lakwena. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

“She and I share a similar vision about our work. So we had this long talk about our process for work – so I’ve kind of gone back to what I used to do, which very much, ‘The Soul is in the Process.’ You know, it’s not just in the planning,” she says.

The two of them are studiously laying out a color palette in trays on the sidewalk and carefully marking out dimensions and patterns across the buffed wall in the chilly drizzle, keeping an upbeat attitude despite a downbeat aqua rhythm that eventually turns to full-on rain.

JM Rizzi. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

An artist who loves the letter-style on public signage, Lakwena says she’s getting inspired by some of the text treatments she’s been seeing on the street here, and she knows she’ll be incorporating some of that inspiration in her text as well. “I don’t have any ‘declarations’ about what its going to be,” she says before revealing that the wall will be inspired by lyrics from a song called “Fever” by her sister.

“It’s inspired by one of her lyrics actually, ‘When I’m free’ is one of them, ” she tells us. “That’s kind of what started it. I mean the lyrics are probably going to be in there because I always have lettering about something that I feel – it’s almost like an anchor for me, which I love.” As one of the outstanding women who rocked Wynwood with Jeffrey Dietch in Miami a few years ago and just recently with JustKids and Charlotte Dutoit in Arkansa for The Unexpected project, you know this wall is going to make Borås jump.

Once the rain clears, that is.

JM Rizzi. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

JM Rizzi. Work in progress. No Limit/Borås 2017. Borås, Sweden 09-2017 (photo © Jaime Rojo)

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