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The BToy Experience

During my time at SAMA, I have already been present during a couple of TeamBlazing workshops and I have witnessed a live painting from Icy and Sot. However, my time with BToy while she was creating her artworks for Schipol was very different.

On my first day with BToy, I was required to help her cut her stencils so that she could paint her artworks around Schiphol. It was amazing, yet somewhat unsurprising, to see how much detail went into each stencil that she drew. It was also very interesting to get a hands-on experience of the techniques involved in creating stencils. This was very good as this process not only allowed me to learn more about the street art scene in general, but also helped me to go into more detail when discussing BToy’s artworks on tours.

Talking to BToy was also very interesting for me as it was the first time that I had conversed with an artist who is renowned in their respective artistic scene. When talking to her, I learned that she had studied law for three years and photography for five years. The reason why this was very notable, for me personally, is because BToy is living proof that an artist's career can be organic and always changing, as opposed to being one set path in only one direction.

During BToy’s visit, I had also learned from her assistant Paloma, that many stencils are now being cut by machines instead of by hand. He had made an interesting point about how a portion of the authenticity is lost when stencils are not cut by hand, despite the fact that machines can cut stencils much quicker and more efficiently. This was a very notable point as, once again, I was able to gain an understanding on how the street art scene is changing in response to developments in technology.

During the production of BToy’s artworks, it was very interesting to see the reactions of strangers passing by on the street. Some people were genuinely interested and questioned what we were doing out of curiosity. Even the police acted friendly and curious when they asked what we were doing. Others, however, were very stubborn and questioned what we were doing out of obstinance. It was funny to see the effect the artworks were having on people even before any of them were complete.

Overall, BToy’s visit was a fantastic learning experience and I am very glad to have met and worked with her. Furthermore, this is the first real street art experience that I have had during my internship at SAMA so it has therefore become a memorable one.

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