LIFESTYLE - CULTURE

Urban artist: “Just do it and stay hungry!”



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Allan Welter poses in front of his mural on the Glacis. Handout photo by Mike Zenari 

Delano catches up with Alain Welter, a Luxembourg illustrator and urban artist.

Welter is originally from Kahler (or Koler in Luxembourgish), which he refers to as “little inconspicuous village in the countryside” in western Luxembourg. But these days he receives commissions both for his illustrations and his murals, in Luxembourg and abroad.

His passion for the arts started very young. Inspired from his childhood comics, cartoons and games, Welter started out drawing characters from Yu-Gi-Ho, Pokémon and Mario Kart. He was 15 years old when he was first introduced to the urban art of graffiti in a skatepark with his friends. In high school, he took art classes for 3 years before moving to Berlin to study illustration design at university. For his final thesis in 2017, Welter came up with the urban art project that he is now the most proud of: “Make Koler Kooler”.

“The project ‘Make Koler Kooler’ is about giving my hometown an added value by turning it into a constantly growing urban-art museum,” Welter told Delano. “Because the art can be found in the streets of Kahler, it is easily and freely accessible to everybody. This project was my steppingstone for future projects.”

Welter’s popularity increased and led him to create murals, either on commission or as part of voluntary projects, in Luxembourg (including the Glacis, Bettembourg and Soleuvre), but also in countries like France, Germany and Colombia. Besides murals, Welter still continues to create illustrations for magazines and other clients such as FC St Pauli, Viva Con Agua, Post Luxembourg, Olliewood and one for Bee Secure coming out in September.

To create his murals, Welter simply uses a roller-brush and a spray paint can. Unless clients have specific requests, coming up with the idea for a mural can take up to a few days of sketching to create the final image.

Lately, Welter has fine-tuned his style in a specific direction: “I love to work with typography and creating my own universe of crazy characters. Therefore, I try to combine these two things with a lot of humor and irony by using wordplays,” explained Welter. “At the moment they look quite realistic because I’m experimenting a lot with different lights and shadows. My last murals where full of little details but for my future projects I try to keep it simple and integrate more graphic elements.”

Welter claimed that the last 3 years have seen the urban art scene bloom in Luxembourg which makes it much easier for artists to get commissioned for their works. To people interested in becoming urban artists, Welter says: “Just do it and stay hungry!”