Contributed by Danielle Simone
Miami Street Art Sensation AHOL (@aholsniffsglue), who represents the #SSK crew, has got EYES all over the 305, literally. The most recent eyes recently have been focused on American Eagle and their use of Ahol’s iconic image: the geometric eye. This interview below was from a while back, when I interviewed him for my personal site, www.CultureHeARTs.com, yet I think we need to stop and take the time to realize how important an artist’s image is: their iconography, and their craftsmanship. Furthermore, recognize that just because art, like Ahol’s public works like his Street Art can be found all over Miami, a major campaign ad cannot just take an artist’s work and make money off of selling the clothes the models are wearing in front of the artist’s backdrop. When we read Vogue for example, we get credits of who the photographer and who the clothes and accessories are made by, styled by, etc…. Why is it ok now for American Eagle to take Ahol’s work and not give it credit?
We as a community need to stand up for artist’s rights. They make our communities brighter, especially in this case, in Wynwood. They create works that make us, the viewer, feel emotions – happy, intrigued, excited, and what not… and I personally think with a great man and artist like Ahol, AE has totally taken advantage of the situation. How would you feel if your work became the face of a national campaign and you were given zero credit?
Read below to find out the magic behind his work and to learn more about him:
DP: While people in MIAMI may recognize your work, being a South Florida native, what other cities do you enjoy working in? Or are you a true 305 type ——-
AHOL: I’ve lived in MIAMI all my life. I identify with my city. I’ve gone to other states up the east coast and countries and spread some of my work but Miami is what matters to me.
DP: Your eyes are what I am most familiar with as is your style from spray paint, but what other symbols are commonly found in your works and what other mediums do you enjoy working with?
AHOL: I try and tie a lot of my stuff together. The eyes come from my characters, the characters tell a story of the common person. My pictures are Miami oriented and my digital cellphone photo chopped images are all Miami based (see image below). I use any medium accessible to me. Possibilities are endless and SPONTANEOUS creation is my favorite.
DP: My mom (who is now my biggest supporter and getting into the whole idea of street art) sent me an article regarding your accident. How horrifically tragic. I am truly sorry but I am SO happy that you have gotten back up and started working again. It is very inspiring. Do you think your style has changed since the accident. Do you look at your art differently?
AHOL: The accident sucked. I am truly blessed to be alive. Many things have come from it. I am now working with Gregg Shienbaum who supported my work through the accident and now I am proud to be a part if his gallery. After the accident, my HUSTLE and DRIVE has been TURNED UP HIGHER THAN EVER.
DP: I checked out your website and I see your paper works encompass a lot of geometric shapes and linear lines. Would you agree that this differs from your work on the streets?
AHOL: Those paper works were part of an urban landscape series I worked on that meant a lot to me. They are very similar to my eyeball line work and attention to detail but in a more free calculated and uncalculated way. It’s hard to explain.
DP: Your latest mural is going up as we speak in Wynwood? What gallery is this for? And are you putting on a show in that gallery? If so, what are the dates for everyone to go and check it out?!
AHOL: The blue mural (above) I’m working on is at Ocean Grown Glass Gallery on NW 2 and 27 Street in Wynwood. They are going to be raising the bar in glass art in the area. They are awesome people and I am thankful they commissioned me to bless their walls. I may be collaborating on something with them in the near future but its still in the talking stage.
DP: Where can we purchase your works? Your online store only sells clothing – but what if we want some prints?
AHOL: I sell some shirts on my site AHOLSNIFFSGLUE.COM. All my fine art can be purchased directly from Gregg Shienbaum from his gallery in Wynwood Gregg Shienbaum Fine Art (GSGFINEART.COM) . P.S: if you like more info, GOOGLE my AHOL: FULL-TIME show and my SNIPERS SHOW, those were the 2 most recent shows that I went more conceptual and a bit off the wall. I am really proud of those bodies of work. Thank you for following my work. 🙂
There ya have it folks. Keep following our dear friend on Instagram @aholsniffsglue. REMEMBER, HE’S GOT EYES ON MI-YA-YO. Keep them open. Remember, beauty is in the EYE of the beholder.