How did you discover graffiti?
I saw the cool kids standing around next to the bumper cars at the fairground with their colourful baseball and football jackets. Really, my brother and I just wanted to belong and wear the same kind of jackets, but they had to be imported from the USA and were really expensive. When we suspected that the tags we were seeing on the bus stops and in the underpasses were sprayed by the same guys, we immediately started doing it too.
Where does your artist name ‘Smash137’ come from?
When I chose the name, I was 16 years old and didn’t really know what it meant. But the letter ‘S’ had always been my favourite letter and it was in there twice.
What distinguishes your works from conventional graffiti?
At first glance, not a lot. But those who take a closer look at the subject will soon realise that this is a very conservative scene where only very few try to find new ways of doing things. That’s something I’ve always done. Maybe that’s the difference.
How would you describe your style?
Simple, striking and organic. Perhaps also friendly. While some of my colleagues add arrows and sharp edges to their letters, I often hear people saying they want to hug my lettering.
Style-writing graffiti focuses mainly on letters and numbers. How did you develop this style?
A turning point for me was no longer seeing letters as architectural entities constructed as overlapping regular blocks, but rather as organic sculptures. Like a sculptor chiselling a work out of stone.