Tell us a little bit about yourself and how you initially got into art.
My name is Chris Dyer, I’m originally from Lima, Peru, but I now reside in Montreal, Canada. I have been doing art since I was very young, since I always had this creative urge to express my love for this physical dimention.
What inspired you to begin creating Visionary Art and what does it mean to you?
I always just painted what I felt expressing at that time. Many of those things make me create new creatures and styles that reflect my personal spiritual journey. It wasn’t until 2003 that I learned about Alex Grey and that there was such a thing as “Visionary Art”, where my work fitted in so well. For me Visionary art is any expression that reflects spirituality, which many times goes past the physical plane, so stuff can get pretty trippy.
You are constantly traveling and doing exhibitions around the world, how does that influence your creative process?
For me travelling has always been super crucial. May I go to exhibit or paint a mural or just chill, I get to observe new faces of humanity as they are decoded into culture. I love seeing new biospheres, eat new food, see new art/architecture/clothing, and hear new music. Little pieces of these investigations end up in my paintings, as I am trying to create “Oneness”.
Your art has a distinctive style that incorporates a wide variety of mediums, themes and techniques. How would you describe your artwork?
I rather not box my art into a label. I am just doing the art of me. That can fall into different categories as Visionary art, which we just talked about, skate graphics, street art, etc. But Im just trying to do me, be myself in what I do, which is a mix of many things.
How did you first get involved with skateboarding culture and started creating skate art?
I got my first skateboard on Christmas 1986 and have been skating ever since. As I approach my 40s I have slowed down but always have a blast when I do make time for it. At the end of the 90’s I had a bunch of broken skates that I couldn’t just throw out in the garbage, so I started to paint them. That caught on cause nobody was doing that in Montreal at the time, so I painted broken skates for years. Eventually I started working for some brands in the skate industry and after a few years I was promoted to be brand manager/Art director at California’s Creation Skateboards. That was all fun, but the skate world has gotten a bit too superficial for me, so by now I am putting my energy into new projects.
You are a renowned street artists with murals all around the world. What got you interested in spray painting and making public art?
In the early 90’s I used to be part of a street gang in Lima and a big part of the fun was going out to spray paint our gangs name all over town. But since my brother became a graffiti artist I stayed away from that medium for many years. Eventually around 2007 I started to use cans again on my back yard and I got hooked. Its such a fun, quick and powerful medium that allows me to do my art in way bigger scale and so much quicker. Being that I live in Canada its crucial that I can also do art outdoors with my friends when the weather allows that.
You have worked and collaborated with Alex Grey, Amanda Sage, Jim Phillips, Wes Humpston and many other iconic creators. Who were your influences when you first started doing art?
Yeah, Im super blessed to have met and worked alongside such awesome creators. Id say Jim Phillips was one of my biggest n earliest infulencers, also VCJ from Powell Peralta graphics. That shit blew my mind as a kid. MC Echer was really inspiring too and eventually I learned about Mati Klarwein. I love so many other artists too though.
Any upcoming projects, curatorial or personal work, you’re looking forward to?
Well, my next stop is Alex grey’s COSM in northern New York, where I will be teaching my yearly workshop there. I’ve been teaching more and more, and already have other workshops planned to do in Vienna, Peru, Australia and Bali later this year. Other than that Im just trying to finish up my commissions and painting tons before leaving on the road again to paint at many hippie festivals this summer. And as per-usual I am getting ready to release my newest wepisodes of my online show “The Artventures of Chris Dyer” (up on Youtube).
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