1) Alright so thanks for taking the time out to do this interview, can we get a brief run down of who you are and how long have you been in the game? What crews do you rep and how did you get the name Mooz?

So I go by the name ‘Mooze’ in the streets. I am from Mumbai, India. I have been writing Mooz since 2012. Earlier I was a Bboy\Dancer, but I had to quit dancing due to academics. That’s when I started writing Graffiti. When I used to dance, the way I carried myself, my hairstyle and my dancing style was very similar to Adam Sevani’s character ‘moose’ from the step up series. Everyone used to call me moose back then. When I had to choose a tag for myself I decided to go by the same name but I switched ‘S’ with ‘Z’ since Z was my favorite letter. At first I used to write ‘mooz’ then I added ‘e’ to get some flow in the letters and E is the perfect letter to end a piece.

2) Man you are crazy prolific and it looks like it has paid off for you, you got big sponsors like Budweiser reaching out and making a short documentary for you promoting your work while celebrating hip hop!  Was that a surreal moment for you to be put in the spotlight by such a huge company? How did all that go down?

It is surreal! When I started writing graffiti in 2012 it was just purely for fun. I did not expect things to go this way! There were no intentions of taking Graff professionally. I have worked with multiple renowned brands now. Such Big brands reaching out for work and collabs is something which makes me realize that you just  have to keep doing what you love and all these opportunities are the by-product of following the process.

Budweiser reached out to make a short documentary on me for representing ‘Graffiti’ as they were celebrating 50 years of Hip-hop. But coincidentally the date that video was going to be live was the day I was completing 11 years of graffiti since my first tag on the wall. So it was more special for me.

3) One of the things you mentioned in the short clip that caught my attention was that you said the documentary Wild Style had a big impact on you. Can you elaborate on how it inspired you, what was it about the documentary that resonated with you?

Yes, so when I started, there was no knowledge or awareness regarding graffiti in India! Since there were less than 25-30 people who were active in the scene. But when I discovered a piece in my area I started researching about it on the internet and started watching documentaries and movies related to graffiti. After a few weeks wildstyle showed up in my feed and after watching it I felt like I was the character in that movie because I was living the same life at that time. Bombing the city, looking out for track walls, sneaking out at night ,early morning bombs, jamming with friends, everything was familiar. Getting my first commercial gig was also somewhat the same as shown in the movie. Entire life of that character resonated with me.

4) A lot of your work also incorporates, pop culture characters which I really dig and I’m sure it helps with getting eyes on your work. So I’m curious with all the anime and comic characters in your work, why did you choose graffiti over doing comics or animation? What is it that is unique about graffiti that draws you into it?

Characters are fine but LETTERS are what I enjoy painting the most! I absolutely love the characters. The cartoons, comic characters and anime storylines have a huge impact on my life. so I try to fit the characters in my piece whenever I feel like it just add more fun to the piece. But for me, letters are the most important since that is what graff is. Leaving your mark!  I like my pieces to have a certain form and flow based on what type of spot\wall it is. Trying to explore the same letters in a unique way every time is a challenge and I enjoy doing that! 

5) We already know what your favorite documentary is but can you give us some honorable mentions on books or other documentaries that you would put up there with Wild Style?

There is this newly released documentary ‘DUALITY: A GRAFFITI STORY’ which I absolutely loved. Apart from that style wars, piece by piece, alter ego are some of my favorites. And in books and magazines, the STYLEFILE series is one of my favorites. Mynt from the JBCB crew (Germany) brings me these magazines every time he visits India! Shoutout to him, birne and rism from Germany.

6) I assume with your skill level you are doing this full time correct? How long did it take to grind to the point where this passion of yours was able to pay the bills? Was there any time that you felt like you should go into something more practical or did you say I’m just going to go for it and make it happen?

I am an architect, but I don’t practice it anymore. I hardly worked for 2 months and I understood that this isn’t what I want to do for the rest of my life! That is when I saw an opportunity to be a full time graffiti artist. I was already doing graffiti when I was studying architecture and by the fourth year I had started getting some regular commercial graffiti works. I paid my fifth year architecture fees myself which was a very big thing back then.

A lot of people appreciated me for that, including my faculty. The same faculty who used to mock me in the first year for writing my name everywhere. After quitting the 2-month job, I took the commercial phase of graffiti seriously and since then its going good! Touch wood! I never planned it this way, but everything was just a result of painting more and more in the streets! That’s why I still love painting on the streets! And will always do.

7) You recently did a Meeting of Styles in Indonesia, we at bombingscience are curious about what the Indian scene is like? Does it have a vital community of bombers or is it just local street artists or foreigners that spray on vacation?

The Indian graffiti scene is very small compared to the rest of the world. But it’s growing. Graffiti in India started around 2009-2010, so the scene was really small when I started. Hardly 10-12 people in Mumbai city itself. But now the scene has grown. You can see tags , throwies in all the major cities. There are few small events happening. But the general public in India has a different perspective towards graffiti. They love it.

Whenever we are painting in the streets people usually appreciate us and interact with us. Here people don’t know exactly what we are doing. Some of the street walls are in very bad condition , so painting them with Graff makes it look good! Even cops are okay with it when we explain to them what we are doing is something of our own interest and nobody is paying us to do so. The number of graffiti writers is more than street artists. It’s a small community which is supportive and growing the scene.

8) It looks like you’ve traveled a little bit as well and done some shows in Thailand! That’s awesome. I’m actually in Thailand now, how would you compare the Indian scene in graffiti to other places like Thailand or anywhere else you have traveled?

I have travelled to Brazil, Bahrain, Indonesia and Thailand for graffiti. My Recent trip to Indonesia for meeting of styles was one of the best. Not only it was fun, but I got to learn so many new things, meet some of the writers I admire. Chilled with them, painted with them, and explored a whole new Indonesian culture.

Indonesia has an amazing graffiti community. We are trying to reflect that in the Indian scene as well. Brazil was also a huge experience for me since it was my first international trip for graffiti. I feel I leveled up a bit after my Brazil trip. Got to learn a lot of valuable things from the writers who have been writing from the past 25-30 years.

9) If you could give us a top few of your favorite Indian artists who would they be? Who’s hot on the scene now and worth following?

When it comes to lettering, Rems is my favorite. He has got a sick style. The scene is hot! My crew mates Zake , Nme are also worth following. Akill , a street art Giant, has been killing huge portraits lately (definitely worth watching). He also does letters sometimes. The entire UFO crew has been doing some crazy Graff action lately! Shootout to all the crews in the country.

10) Thanks again for taking the time out to chat, Any shoutouts you would like to give? Where can people follow you and purchase your work?

I am absolutely grateful for this interview. Have been following bombing science since I started Graff. And you guys reaching out to me is such an honor for me! You can follow most of my work on instagram (@mooz.one) and I put graffiti vlogs on my youtube (mooz graffiti). 

Already gave shoutout in previous answer but shoutout to all the Indian writers keeping the scene alive. Pune boys, Mumbai / Delhi writers! Everyone!