“Catching Tags” by artist Rafael Sliks presents a body of work that spotlights the simplest and most prevalent type of graffiti – the tag. Used as a signature, the tag expresses a graffiti artist’s ability to showcase his speed, precision, and artistry with a single-color tag of his moniker. Like a fingerprint, no tag is alike and each one is unique. In the graffiti world where your style sets you apart, your tag can either make or break you.
Known for his stylized flares, Rafael Sliks is able to transcend the streets with his tags. With the use of his flares, Sliks creates a smoky gradient and depth that hypnotizes the viewer, taking you into another world where contemporary meets an urban setting. A juxtaposition of the raw street art and curated gallery art, Sliks’ work is equally chaotic, calming, loud, and peaceful all at once.
Rafael Sliks’ body of work with “Catching Tags” will feature two different styles that play with the concept of mixing the street with the curated. One side will feature his graffiti tags on lithograph prints of high editorial portraiture photography, as his flares and lines create a visually stunning additional layer of depth as it extenuates certain features of the model. The other side will feature his tags as they layer into patterns on canvas, as they weave seamlessly between the gallery walls and the canvases.
In addition to his body of work, a special Limited-Edition Rafael Sliks x Ewkuks collaboration T-Shirt will also be released featuring Rafael’s handwritten graffiti along with his rendition of a well-known cartoon cat, as pop culture cartoon characters are often used in the graffiti culture.
An abstract street artist from São Paolo, Brazil; Rafael Sliks is inspired by the degradation of São Paolo caused by both neglect and pollution. Due to the illegal nature of his street vandalistic work, Sliks keeps his identity anonymous and not too much of his personal information and background is known. What we do know is Sliks’s career sprung relatively early in his life, around the late 90’s. As was the case for many of his fellow street artists, Rafael started as a part of a crew that was into tagging the streets of urban environments such as São Paolo. Graffiti developed Sliks’ compositional skills, teaching him how to position his elements within a frame. Evolving his style into a more surreal approach, Rafael has started creating a unique universe of dreams placed on urban environments he has stumbled upon his journeys. Though this style has become the focal point of his art career, Sliks never stops tagging the streets every chance he gets. Rafael Sliks’ artwork can be seen around the world.