Artists In Profile: Splink and the NOM NOM Collective

Artist-NOM NOM 5 lints south america

Do you Love Lamp? Does that mean anything to you, beyond the obvious source (the 2004 movie Anchorman)? Artwork named and themed around the quote has been a staple of Dublin street art for quite some time now, stickered and postered wherever eyes might pass over it.

We spoke with Splink, the street artist and graphic designer behind the recurring icon, about that particular creation, and the work of the NOM NOM Collective, of which he is a part.

The origin of the group was simple. All were working individually as artists but were constantly invited to showcase their work together. “After a few years we just decided to put a name on it,” Splink tells me.

Predominantly known as a street art collective, NOM NOM are a diverse bunch of practitioners. Splink works as a graphic and packaging designer and teaches urban art classes for teenagers (a natural outgrowth of his long-time commitment to graffiti).

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Loki has illustrated children’s books for publishers such as Veritas. Lints and Askim are self-taught artists and professional mural painters, and Poncho, D$ and Jine are graphic designers. The structure of the group is loose and informal, closer to the model of a graffiti crew than a fine art house. Each pursues their own careers while periodically meeting up to collaborate. “We don’t really have an agenda,” Splink explains “we just like to hang out and paint walls.”

Did the ubiquity of the I LOVE LAMP series affect its creator? “I did recently get in contact with a few photographers via Facebook and Flickr to get permission to use their photos of my work for a short film chronicling the evolution of the I Love Lamp street art campaign. I hadn’t realised I had put up so many lamps. It may have got a little out of hand.”

There were plans to retire the series, after Splink became bored. He took a break to work on other things, but it seems the Lamp won’t lie still. “I don’t think I can ever kill it off entirely. It’s part of me now, whether I like it or not.”

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There’s an irony to this, as the intent behind the work was the appeal of deliberate obscurity. “Lamp was an experiment in not using a name at all, but using a logo: a small rebellion against being in the graffiti scene for many years, where your name is the most prominent feature within your practice.”

In researching NOM NOM, another group of the same name was discovered, operating in Denmark. NewsFour wondered if there was a connection, and it turns out there is. “We are the Danish Nom Nom crew. We have been invited over to Copenhagen several times to exhibit and to paint large scale murals at an art festival called Galore. Also, myself and Loki have travelled to Demark on many occasions to visit Lints and his beautiful wife. As street art is highly valued and appreciated over there, it would be rude of us not to partake.”

NOM NOM Collective are online at Facebook and Vimeo.

Artworks by Loki, Lints, Askim and Lamp by Splink.

By Ruairi Conneely

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