Established 2009 Los Angeles
Free Humanity is an internationally recognized artist that has focused on political situations and notable figures who have had a positive impact on the world.
Working his way from small street pieces to large scale murals all over the country Free Humanity art can be seen on the streets of many cities world ranging from London, Paris, Mexico City, New York, Miami, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego. With his signature heart style
His mission statement sums up his ideal for his work
“Take back Humanity stolen from our minds by social manipulation and plant seeds of positivity through art and consciousness.”
BM: Tell us a bit about the Free Humanity concept? And where the name came from?
FH: The concept stems from an idea I had a long time ago about a photography project I wanted to do. I wanted to have individuals represent the extremes of life (white supremacists, business men, homeless, working class) and hold cardboard signs that read “proud to be human.” Then in 2009 I decided to take that concept to the streets.
BM: When did you start painting?
I started finger painting on my parents walls when I was 6 months old. I like to think of that as when my love for painting started.
BM: What are your thoughts on Art Basel?
FH: Art Basel used to be cool before 2012. Then it became more of a party and less about the art.
BM: Can you tell us how you adapted the hearts and how they became a signature in your career?
FH: I have had the heart motif since about 2010, but implemented it publicly when I was commissioned in 2011 to paint a mural for a photography studio off of Sunset. I slowly adapted it into my style and it remains prevalent in all of my work to date. I would much rather just pop cans and blast color but I feel that there is a symbolic meaning in hearts that reaches every person in the world no matter what race or nationality. I also feel that bright colors make people feel good. And that’s all I want to do in life-make people feel good.
BM: I see a hand full artist trying to mimic the same style of different color hearts, how does that make you feel as an artist?
FH: I like to think that my particular style is difficult to replicate exactly. Due to a style where the spray line goes fat to thin. This is difficult to do and takes a lot of can control which I have to see duplicated. And as I like to say, “the FH signature style often imitated, never duplicated.”
BM: So in terms of subject matter, I specifically notice Audrey Hepburn being used quite a bit. What's the reason for using her?
FH: Audrey Hepburn symbolizes humanitarianism for me. She was the UNICEF goodwill ambassador and UNICEF is the first responder to children in crisis in war torn countries and other war afflictions. She was a classy, selfless actress which seems to be a rarity-both in her time and now.
BM: What are your thoughts on Instagram? How do you use it that as a platform for your art?
FH: I like to think of social media like what Napster and Limewire were for music. They take out the middle man and make it possible for artists to sell art directly without the need for galleries. And in the street art world the streets are the biggest galleries.
BM: What inspires you as a person?
FH: Conceptual artists inspire me-artists like Martin Creed. Abstract art inspires me-artists like Gerard Richter. The writings and lectures of theoretical physicists like Lawrence Krauss and string theorists like Brian Greene inspire me. And the writings of the Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh.
BM: I saw that you were doing a bit more oil paintings, is that a medium the people should expect more from you? How has the respond been?
FH: I make oil paintings because they take a long time. Spray painting is quick and I want to fill my day with making art. Oil painting allows me to do that. But to be completely honest, I get bored of anything I do too much or too often so I like to mix up my mediums-whether it be conceptual, abstract, collage, spray paint, or oil paint. I like to think of myself as an interdisciplinary artist that expresses what is in my heart on a day to day basis.
BM: What’s next for Free Humanity?
FH: I don’t want to know what’s next. I hope never to know what’s next. I like to live my life very much here in the moment. Whatever comes, just comes. I think that living life this way makes me the happiest and keeps me creative.
BM: What advice do you have for new up and coming artists?
FH: I would tell people not to become an artist because it is an intense labor of love. Very few people get to sell and make a living off of art. I’m not too sure how it happened to me. But I think people that are true artists can’t stop making artwork. No matter where they find themselves or what they’re doing-because life is art.
I would just like to end this by saying to anyone reading this that all life is precious and every moment is infinitely as important as the next. Life is fragile and you should take advantage of it every minute of every day. -Free Humanity