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Peeta's Moveable Feast

Words:

Edd Norval
July 11, 2019

Peeta's work has steadily been evolving over the last decade since initially picking up the can over two decades ago. Having found his voice, he's now more technically capable than ever to express it. 2019 has been a vintage for the Italian who is pushing boundaries in the street art world.

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His paintings are morphing buildings all around the world into haphazard shapes, seemingly folding in on themselves a la Inception. Drawing on the rich history of optical illusion artists in street art and beyond, Peeta has adapted this into a powerful blend of old-school graffiti and contemporary stylings and techniques.


Sharp lines in his figures, which are mainly letter-based, bring the aggressive nature of his roots into a brand new setting, pushing perspective and scale to new frontiers. Most recently, a piece in Mannheim for the Stadt.Wand.Kunst project has got people talking.


Graffiti is usually a language spoken to others who are fluent. To outsiders, it's indistinguishable from childlike scribbles, but to the community its for, it speaks volumes and the slightest nuance or flourish sets artists apart from their peers. Peeta hasn't lost this aspect of his work, only by sheer excellence of its technicality, has opened it up to a whole new interested audience.

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Utilising the architectural style of the building and its corner placement, Peeta was able to utilise the three-dimensions as a means of creating a sort of anamorphic piece that offered the audience various perspectives of the design, depending on their viewing position on the street below.


Understanding it's nature is almost impossible, that is, at its essence, the design makes the building seemingly defy the conventions of physics creating a sort of cognitive dissonance for the viewer. Yet, it is exactly this notion of impossibility that keeps us guessing like the Penrose Stairs or works by Escher.


It's tame palette, able to part-blend in with the sky on summer days, gives the unnatural a distinctly natural feeling, suggesting that what we're looking at isn't strange at all - even going to far as to challenge our notion of what is strange/normal, and why that is the case.

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The artist himself elaborates on this notion:


"Initially, my works only realized the sculptural quality of individual letters, namely the ones that spelled out my own moniker, Peeta. Progressively, the fusion between traditional lettering and three dimensional style has given life to a unique kind of visual rhythm. Today, through my anamorphic works I redesign the volumes of any kind of surface involved, thus causing with my paintings a “temporary interruption of normality” by altering the perception of familiar contexts and so raising a different understanding of spaces and, consequently, of reality on a whole."


Peeta is obviously highly motivated by perception and architecture, but underlining that is a deeply cerebral fascination with how our minds work and what happens if the signals get confused or cross-over.


The way Peeta accentuates certain features of the original facade shows his respect for what he does and where he does it. Painting in such a way - from colour to co-ordination - makes his works exist on both ordinary and extraordinary levels, much like a glitch in the matrix. Now that he has fully tapped into this new creative era for his work, he has the chance to transform the world into his own vision - a rare state that allows art to flourish and change minds.

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