“I maintain principally a figurative language [i.e. painting people], but for me the paint itself has stopped being only a “painting for the street”. I started to understand it as part of the urban landscape, like a unit which is part of the composition of the whole.”
“The idea is to always have an excuse to keep painting, to transgress, to counterbalance the publicity that encourages constant consumption, bad architecture and to return public spaces to the people.”
“In each society, art represents what is taking place there and the art is a consequence of that. Street art in Lima has a very marked social agenda, thanks to a lot of factors one of which is immigration. As an immigrant to Lima your customs adapt to the new context, become deformed or are simply lost all together. There is a huge alienation, a struggle just to survive and every day all you can do is keep looking ahead, feeling foreign in the space that you inhabit.”
“I am really happy doing murals and each time on a larger scale, in different places, decentralizing this activity. I’m also interested in working with more enduring materials and modifying structures.”
We have been watching the work of Daniel “Decertor” Cortez’s work for some time on Flickr. We never found the time to put together an artist feature about the Peruvian artist until now. After doing some searching we found an old interview posted some time ago by Global Street Art. The quotes above are taken from that interview. Decertor is based in Lima Peru working in a figurative mural style. Originally Decertor started murals by painting portraits of fallen gang members in tribute. He now works in his own unique mural style incorporating traditional motif and color juxtaposed with figurative elements. Painting in a cache of styles Decertor shows his ability to create powerful murals that attach themselves not only to the walls but the city they are painted in. By incorporating native figures and the colorful palette of the culture Decertor establishes a dialogue with the city and its people. His murals extend the plane of everyday people into the architecture of the city. Rural settings are set a blaze with color and imagery. The scale creates another dimension to his work establishing relevance to common subject matter. In a city where murals are used as propaganda his work walks a dangerous line with local political entities. The power of street art is real in this case. Honest, Decertor has built a narrative visual language that captures the essence of the cities they are painted in. Stern expressions and intimate angles where you seem to be behind his subjects watching them from behind create a feeling of reflection. Beauty is not the objective you are allowed to contemplate what you are looking and why was this painted here. These small yet effective nuances in the work of Decertor enhance the overall effect of the paintings. We hope to see more of Decertor outside of Peru. His work is as important as any other than I can think of at the moment. A hidden talent hidden in the Andes Decertor has decided to not let the rural geography of his location become a deterrent instead he embraces and utilizes this in his work. We hope to share more updates from the artist in the future.