Momo interview

momo rojo book

If you were French, Momo would be a short name for Maurice or Mohamed. Where does this name come from? Where are you from Momo? What five words best describe you?

I’m sure that MOMO sounds better in French.  Its just a silly nickname.  I’m from San Francisco, all my family is; three generations on both sides, but I live in Brooklyn now.  A friend from high school sitting next to me wants to say: “icon”, “positive”, “loves to laugh”, “stylish”, “obsessive” to describe me, but its with a dry sense of humor (and more than 5 words).

Your work is often a mix of clean and sharp shapes and some more spontaneous/random shapes. Does it reflect something about you; a fight between order & freedom? a split personality : Mondrian vs the Sex pistols?

I think you’re right.  I made loads of drawings while in Paris from medieval tapestries that feature crumbling castles (Armageddon imagery) in 2003.  It was “order and disarray”, and since then its interested me.  Entropy… we’re doomed while we’re uptight, and its a confetti party if you let go.  Or how hard I worked all my youth to draw well and now I do scribbles and blobs(?).  There’s also anger, & seeing order destroyed feels good, for stupid fun, and also smart revelation, ’cause order is superficial.

Momo New Orleans

Your work is often based on pasting many geometric colored papers. Do you know where you will display your work when you are working on it? Does the final work look always exactly like what you planned in your studio, or does it change a bit when you paste your material? It looks exactly how I plan it.  I’ve tried other ways, like carrying cut paper that could fill any space, like 100 cut dots or stripes, then spread them like paint anywhere. But I enjoy having as much as possible thought-out, and really collage is not so flexible.

Who is your art for? When did creating art become something important in your life? My art is for anyone at all (seriously, that’s the best), but not everyone.  I was hooked at age 3.  The weird experience was: I was making kids drawings, like wishing I had access to video games: so one character shoots another and you scribble them out…. then I wished I had a camera, so I made drawings to look like photographs, with foreshortening, cropped elements- and adults freaked out.  I thought that was pretty cool.


There are trends in graphic design and art: Pixels, Deer antlers, drips, stencils… Fluo colors & rhombi were pretty popular recently. Do you feel close to this 80’s revival?
Yikes, no way, none of it.  Its sexy, but I came to the loud color thing from time I’d spent in the Caribbean.  My inspiration is their self taught wide-open use of color, I’d like to avoid “Pop”, retro or otherwise. (more…)

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