To kick off our monthly street art showcase, our focus turns to Israeli's best known graffiti crew. Broken Fingaz are made up of four artists from Haifa (Northern Israel), now regulars to the London scene, they're also known for their distinctive animation and muralism. We had the pleasure of teaming up with Unga - see what he had to say about his piece on door 30, and his inspirations below...
What does your piece on door 30 tell us about you and the influence of your culture on your art?
I come from a divided culture, so the piece is about East and West…I don’t see myself as a European. The West for me is still West from Israel.
Do you have a political voice?
Sometimes. Recently a lot more. I try to move away from politics. Israel is so full of politics and propaganda I try to remove myself from it through my art. I’m becoming more interested in that side of expression, but finding a way to do it sensitively. The medium of graffiti is political in a sense because it is illegal in many places. As a youth it was dangerous and exciting and now I feel I’m reclaiming public spaces in a positive way.
How do you ‘Escape the Ordinary?’
My lifestyle is nomadic and constantly moving, I don’t have any routines. I like to keep moving and not stay in one place for too long. This keeps my life and my artwork fresh.
What is your favourite European destination and why?
London. Even though it smells like fried chicken and too capitalistic. Something about it feels very charming. It’s exciting being in one of the main centres of the world. People get our art here too, it’s a more cynical place than the U.S so the irony of our work isn’t lost.
Where is your biggest following?
Israel. Maybe London. We’ve done shows in LA, Amsterdam, Vienna, Paris and we have one coming up soon in Rome.
How would you describe your artistic style?
Illustration based, colourful. Sometimes intense, sometimes dark content but executed in a fun way.
What inspires you?
Music, people, nature, drugs, my immediate surroundings and experience inform my work. I like to find the extraordinary in normal everyday things.
What are you passionate about?
Art, visual art, cooking, surfing.
How does your art influence what you wear?
I wish my clothing was as inspired and thought-about as my art! Graffiti and fashion don’t really go together. Your clothes get ruined quickly.
How did you create your style of work?
A lot of experience, years of practice, experimenting with different forms until I arrived at something I liked. Then I pushed it forward.
What is your ambition?
Keep doing what I’m doing, improving, keep creating. And to have more money.
What advice would you give to aspiring young artists back in Haifa?
Go against the grain, do the opposite of what makes sense. Don’t think rationally.
▀ Come and view Unga’s work at 30, Redchurch St until December 5th. Follow Broken Fingaz on Instagram and Twitter @BrokenFingaz