ODN is an English born artist who fled to Amsterdam in search of new inspiration and ideas. Back in ‘blighty (England), ODN graduated in Graphic Design but became disillusioned with the commercial world of graphic art and advertising.Growing up in England he was no stranger to breaking rules. After being educated about design and marketing, he saw how England was being force fed with what he considered to be useless advertising.
‘’I loved learning, but when I started working it broke my heart to know the worst ideas work best. The psychology behind every day graphics and corporate advertising is purely evil and disruptive to our being’’
This led him to express himself through a different medium – graffiti. Along with his mentors BHC, Mr.TEE and SIRO, he began to decorate the streets! These activities were generally frowned upon by the law, so ODN waited patiently for night to fall, before he struck – hence the name ‘Only Done Nocturnally’
“GETTING TAGS UP IS INTENSE! IT TAKES BALLS AND GIVES A SENSE OF FREEDOM IN AN OTHERWISE DICTATED WORLD’’
On moving to Amsterdam, ODN at first only observed the Dutch graffiti scene, as he was unsure of the rules and etiquette on the streets and trackside. It didn’t take long though before he started meeting graffiti writers through work and friends. ODN began spreading his name around Amsterdam like an illegible plague!
After spending many late nights and mornings looking for spots to write, he later became aware of a whole other side to graffiti in Amsterdam. Legal walls! He couldn’t believe he could paint freely in the sunshine, with no police to bother or arrest him (although they tried a few times)
‘’One time I was painting some wooden boards on the Brouwersgracht with some friends, when the police stopped by to arrest us. We explained that we had permission to paint, but this one cop must’ve had a boner for graffiti writers! He called for some vans to pick us up and ordered us to pack away our cans, lecturing us, whilst being taunted by the public. Luckily, my friend managed to contact the owner of the building before we got arrested. When the owner arrived the police man pathetically apologized to the owner for wasting his time and said nothing at all to us. At least we got to finish the wall!’’
Now with all the time he needed to practice, ODN turned from criminal to respectable!
With his new reputation as an upcoming artist, ODN has been heavily involved with various projects and shows in Amsterdam, including his own art shows and group paintings. These days ODN is now commissioned to paint and his work spans from bars to bedrooms and from coffeeshops to canvas. He gives workshops and even does live painting at parties.
You can view ODN’s work on yahoo’s flickr, as well as hunting around Amsterdam for still existing walls. If you like his work and would want him to paint for you or to be involved in future projects, he’s more than approachable and reasonably priced.
To see ODN in action amongst other artists, make sure you come to DAMBREAKS @ Cafe Batavia 1920, Prinshendrikkade 85, Amsterdam, on Friday the 29th June 2012, from 10pm. Not only will you see live art from ODN and the DAMARTIST’S, but will be also treated to some live funk and hip-hop from ODN’s alternative aka – Fredee Brazil the Funky Fresh rapper.
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