The Stussy Spring 2012 collection includes a series of t-shirts by Dutch artist Parra. Parra is best known for his curved post-Pop imagery, highly saturated colors, vibrant hand-drawn letters and worlds inhabited by hybrid, surreal characters. Celebrated by galleries and championed by an underground following from the outset, Parra has quickly become a respected and eclectic artist worldwide. Working across drawing, painting, animation and sculpture, Parra creates an enigmatic and instantly recognizable style that defies easy categorization. Parra is co-founder of cult apparel label Rockwell Clothing and a member of electronic music collective Le Le. Check out this interview with Parra from his Amsterdam studio.
I read European comics, TinTin and another called Suska and Biscuit, which is every kid had that. And Donald Duck magazine. But I didn’t really read the Marvel stuff or the He-Man or Super, all the stuff I think American kids grow up with. I found out later.
Because I got a very minimal color pallette. Usually you get the blues in there but then there’s also color that I dislike, which is kind of weird. I always wondered why I don’t like this yellow, it hurts my eyes and it never works with my drawings. Green. You know, those two, I don’t know.
I grew up outside the city, like in an almost abandoned farm because it was cheap for my father to make a studio in that and we found a really young wounded crow and I took care of that crow for like a year and then it flew away. They always had something with that, the freedom. See this is really deep, it’s silly, it’s just, you know, but then, because they do human things you can go really raunchy without people being offended and so I put beaks on them as masks, you know. It’s a mask. But the naked ladies, I don’t know, maybe my dad that, he always drew you fat, pretty chubby naked girls, you know, playing with dogs. That’s kind of his theme and I think I just stole it from him.
Skating, my skate boarding and everything graphic and the shirts, you know, I get excited when I see old Santa Cruz graphics or an old board. I don’t know, I think that was a very special moment. Because I think I was developing my tastes, you know. When I was like 12 or 13, what I really liked, you know, what you actually liked, not what the kids at school but what you like and that was Americana stuff, you know, skateboarding and bright color and kind pop-cultural. It was, I don’t know, I think that was the major influence.