AREMS is a graffiti writer from Sydney. He started painting in 97 when the Sydney scene was thriving. Over the years he has put in a lot of work painting panels, tracksides and travelling abroad to paint his name. He is a member of CROOKS, KOS & MOC CREWS. We caught up for a quick interview and asked for his favourite five flicks.
1. What got you into graffiti?
I grew up in inner west Sydney. Mystery had many walls in the area. I was amazed by his characters. I used to try and recreate them in my school books. Scram had a piece in my primary school as well DEF CREW with a green alien cazza. Lewisham drains and Leichhardt Lezzo carpark were where i did my first pieces. The Rek crew were very active and had many burners in both of these spots. My mate Sytak lived on my street and with a few local kids we wrote NBK (Natural Born Killerz). Sytak was the brains of the crew and a talented artist and was always pushing the standard. We would paint the lines most weekends and paint drains in the day. Then I worked of where the trains parked on the weekend. That became a mad addiction for most of my adult life haha
2. How would you describe your style and what were your influences?
Simple public with a few do dads and some bits. I was heavily influenced by kink/fsute and the REK crew when I first started to paint. I experimented with a few different styles then really got back to basics and started doing real simple stuff. Public funky styles i like best. You can't hide shit letters with fancy techniques. My favourite writers that i got influenced by would be Dems and PLS crew, Crayon FUA, Screws KOA, Taven RBS, Unique IBS, Scram TM and Dmote PS.
3. Do you have a good chase story?
One that comes to mind is painting old Wooloware lay up (R.I.P) one school night. Me Oden, Komps and a few others. We were all jamming for about 15 minutes when we get absolutely bum rushed from all sides by transits. Their was like four carloads of coppers on the lines. Fuck! all the boys painting either side of me got grabbed.
Me and komps turn around and started scrambling up the steep incline behind us. Its a VERY steep hill, we were scrabbling up it grabbing onto tree roots and branches to pull ourselves up. We get to the top of the hill and fence to find 4 paddy wagons sitting there with lights flashing but...no cops in them. Sweet. We leg it to the main road and find a big front yard to hide. In the mad dash up the steep valley a tiny twig off a bush stabbed me in the eye during the chaos. Got a cab outta there ASAP. Woke up the next day and my eye was burning. Off to the sick bay. I ended up needing surgery to remove a tiny piece of twig that was stuck in my eye. Had to make up a story to tell the boss that I was running for a train and didn’t see the tree branch sticking out. Well it was sort of true. ;)
4. MOC CREW made a big impact on the train scene in Melbourne & Sydney in the 2000's, What was it like being part of such an active crew?
MOC gave the buffers plenty of headaches in the early 2000s. It was a real good time in my life and when I took graff pretty seriously. We did a lot of damage across the network. I had a crack but nothing compared to Komps Bleak Sirips Hemi Oden and my old mate Cast .....these boys are the real deal. Oden deserved more credit than he got. He did 100s of panels and had many aliases. Always did his homework, racked all his paint and knew the system back to front. A real writer. I think going to Melbourne in 2002 to paint for the first time was probably the highlight of writing for me. Most of it was documented on the MOC1 dvd. We run amuck down there. I loved painting the yards down there. Watching my panels run on hursty line was the best. Seeing all the old school burners still up on the lines and the huge WCA goldie was mad. So much history and style I love Melbourne.
5. What motivates you to keep painting?
Bones KOS CROOKS He’s taken what Style and knowledge I gave him years ago and run with it. He does some mad shit. Brings a tear to my eye. But seriously Im extremely unmotivated. I spend most of my free time on instagram hating on people who are more talented than me.