This is Slava. Slava is a Street & Tape Artist from Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine who came to live in Germany with his family when he was 18 years old. They moved to Lübeck in Northern Germany where he lived for the next eight years. In 2003, Slava came to Berlin for the first time. The reason for his visit: the famous Love Parade. “I intended to stay for two days only” he remembers “but I met these great kids from Kreuzberg and we instantly got along very well. Two days turned into two weeks, and eventually a bit later I moved to Berlin for good.”
As a young adult Slava studied Architecture in Ukraine. Then in Germany he successfully completed his vocational training in a printing workshop. “I’ve always been doing something with art,“ he sums up. In 2011, Slava met Stefan Müller, a German artist from Prenzlauer Berg who inspired and encouraged him to work as a freelance artist. So he did, and from 2012 to 2014, he became a Resident Artist at Urban Spree.
“What do you like most about Tape Art?” I enquire, leading to a response that he likes the idea of rationality. “I am an architect, an engineer” he continues, “and I like to create art within a certain frame. Also, Tape Art isn’t connected to any vandalism and destruction of property.”
Currently Slava is continuing to work as a freelance Street & Tape Artist in Berlin. Just recently he participated in workshops for the students at the Berlin University of Art (GWK, UDK Berlin) as well as various street art workshops all over Germany, Ukraine and Russia. “Well Slava, why do you live in Berlin?” I pose the last question of my interview with the artist. “Berlin is cool. Berlin is my city. I am a Berliner,” his response is rapid. “I am very thankful to the city. Without Berlin I wouldn’t be the person I am right now nor the person I will still become.”