If you told me a month ago that Amman has a budding Graffiti scene, I would laugh at you. Fortunately for you, I am sometimes stupid, but also always curious. Last Friday I got in touch with Suhaib Attar, Waseem “Wize One”, and Deev.
The chair in the picture below was in the middle of the parking lot, with spray cans littered around it. You could tell a Graffiti storm was about to brew:
Suhaib is a member in a Graffiti trio called PhotoGraffiti, and luck had it that they met to spray walls every Friday between 1 and 5 PM, just around the time I called him for an interview. Pen in hand and HCW photographer Ashwaq Chahine in tow, we headed off into the British Council parking lot (AKA the Wall of Fame), near the NYIT garden in Jabal Amman with somewhat average expectations. Click on the images in the gallery below to see just how impressive the art in the Amman Wall of Fame is.
I can’t describe the rate at which I was blown away. We spent the afternoon with these three abiding dudes, who showed me just how cool Graffiti can be. In and out of the parking lot came spectators, friends and other artists who had their own tools.
22-year-old Suhaib Attar is a student in the JU majoring in fine arts, but that’s not all of what he is; Suhaib is a student by day, and a remarkable artist at night. If you’ve seen the murals slapped on the British Council’s walls, then you’ve seen a glimpse of Suhaib’s mind.
His volunteer work, along with Wize One and others with the British council allowed Graffiti artists to gain access to the Amman Wall of Fame, and flourished a legal spinoff to a previously hidden Graffiti scene in Amman. When asked about the legality of Graffiti in Amman in general, Suhaib tells us that depending on what’s written, you can get charged for vandalism anywhere between three to eight months in prison. And while we were there, Suhaib whipped a beautiful, trippy jellyfish on the wall in less than an hour.
Click the image to the right to enlarge it.
Some of Suhaib’s older works:
If anything, I can safely say that Wize one is Amman’s Graffiti Godfather.
Wize one is a humble artist, and has worked with the British council along with Suhaib. He has done a workshop or two, and makes legitimate money out of this spray painting habit. We didn’t get much out of him, but we know that his passion started years back, when he lived in South Africa. The dude even met NINJA from Die Antwoord! When asked about whether he’d like to tag some walls abroad or not, Wissam, “Wize One”, was quiet, but let us know that there are plans sometime soon for work abroad.
20-year-old Abdelrahman “DEEV” Alwan, is a Jordanian who was born in Kuwait. He moved to Jordan In 2012 to pursue his dreams in Graphic design. He’s currently studying in the Applied Science university.
DEEV, who started his passion for graffiti at the age of 13 has nothing but big dreams. “I’d like to tag the walls in France and Germany some day,” he tells us. Upon comparing his work in Kuwait and Jordan, DEEV mentions the difficulty of painting walls in Kuwait, whereas the legal wall in Jordan allowed him to tag the walls with a relaxed spirit. He is currently working on his first serious Graffiti project with his university.
Below are some of DEEV’s works (CLICK ON THE IMAGES FOR A BETTER QUALITY):