Life Magazine: The ‘Jewish Banksy’ who is anything but elusive

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Life Magazine: The ‘Jewish Banksy’ who is anything but elusive

Naomi Frankel meets artist Marc Silver whose passion for being creative goes back to his childhood

Naomi is a freelance journalist

Marc Silver’s passion for art goes back to his childhood. 

“I could never get my head around people using spray cans and air brushes to create wonderful masterpieces.” It was graffiti in city spaces that initially grabbed Marc’s attention, and he evolved from pencil artist to graphic designer before deciding to follow the street art movement in 2019. He then founded his own company, MurWalls, which brings the art he embraces to the public as well as within people’s homes using some of the finest urban artists in the UK.

 In his role as CEO, Essex-born Marc designs the murals, selects the street artists and project manages to ensure ultimate client satisfaction every time. 

“When it comes to our clients, they usually have an idea of what they’re after, but don’t always know exactly what they want,” says Marc. “We advise them and sometimes we just create something we envision would work.”

Away from suburban residencies, it’s the sports world that has raced to snap up Marc’s work, with MurWalls becoming the first street art brand to have an official licence with Liverpool Football Club, BBC Sport, England Rugby and West Ham United. This ever-growing client base will soon include Watford FC, Wycombe Wanderers and Brighton and Hove Albion, but it was MurWalls’ tribute to the Liverpool goalkeeping legend Ray Clemence that holds a place in Marc’s heart.

Jordan Henderson Visits a Mural Of Himself in Anfield on July 25, 2020 in Liverpool, England. (Photo by John Powell/Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

“It was painted next to Anfield stadium on the side of an end of terrace house,” he explains. “We built a wonderful relationship with the Clemence family and especially loved having Ray involved in choosing the image. We were so proud when he told us how much he loved it, but sadly his poor health didn’t allow him to make the journey to Liverpool to see it, as he lost his battle with cancer a few weeks after it was finished.” 

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 Other favourite projects include a large Beatles mural in their home city of Liverpool on the side of the Phoenix Hotel to mark the group’s 60th anniversary and another was creating the opening to the first episode of the 2020/21 season of Match of the Day for BBC Sport. “What an honour,” coos Marc. “It was something I would have paid them to let us do!”

As an admirer of surrealist master Salvador Dali – “He was my inspiration growing up and his unique style can lend itself to any art form” – Marc enjoys seeing his artists create pieces for themselves driven by a love of something or a tribute to someone who made an impact on their lives, but they are equally content creating home murals for children, as MurWalls also holds official licences with Hasbro, Monopoly, Transformers and Care Bears among many others.

“We are about to create something huge for England Rugby at Twickenham stadium,” says Marc. “To be doing something so vast at an iconic stadium will surely be our greatest achievement to date.”

Murals for children, including young Harry

 And with all these epic projects, Marc is in a comfortable position to offer tips to other hopeful young street artists in the community.

“Keep practising as much as you can,” he says. “To be able to get that piece on to a wall using a can is a whole new skill, so it’s about getting used to holding one as you would a pencil or brush. 

“Watch tutorials on YouTube and even find a local workshop if you can. Get a large piece of MDF (medium density fibreboard) to work with in your garden and give it a base coat of paint… then it’s ready for you to try your hand with a can. Don’t worry about going wrong, as there is no such thing.” 

Follow @murwalls and @murwallsart on Instagram 

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