About Debens

Born in 1980, Debens was “founded” in 1994, during the burgeoning, early days of the Barcelona Graffiti scene. By 1999 he decided to break with what he had thus far learned, adopting different, often more naive and ostensibly unsophisticated techniques. The creation of “The Chair” as an icon became his key starting point, Debens not only using a new form of symbolic geometry but introducing elements of collage and assemblage into his compositions.

 

Experimenting with paint, photography, sculpture and performance, Debens came to produce an anti-aesthetic in both fine-art and graffiti terms, one which can be understood to have worked against what was then the prevalent Barcelona modality.

 

As a key member of the highly influential collectives “O.N.G.” (or Ovejas NeGras – Black Sheep), alongside artists Skum or Sae. As of 2005 Debens works thus became more expressive, less conventional than traditional graffiti, taking a distinctly neo-expressionist turn with a rough, often violent use of colour, furious technique. He is influenced by his studies in Fine Arts and his work in studio.Since 2007, Debens work has mutated once more. Whether working on his graffiti installations”, site-specific sculptures merging graffiti with cloth, wood and trash (in a further nod to neo-expressionism), his stickers and billboard modifications, or his more recent, large-scale collages using found imagery and a final picture that becomes an essential part of the work, Debens keeps setting himself new goals, experimenting with new sensations, refusing to be defined by a single style.

 

As a pure nonconformist, he is not interested in mere repetition but in the enjoyment of his artistic freedom and creative diversity. He thus seduces the ephemeral, working through improvisation and randomness, constantly putting into practice different methods, each time obtaining radically different results. As one of the most mutable, most “chameleon” like of independent public artists then, Debens can be seen to never come to rest, constantly forming and re-forming his output in an endless cycle of invention.