Connect with us

Thai Life

Parisian street art colors Phuket

Legacy Phuket Gazette



PHUKET: Renowned French street artist Noe Two is a regular visitor to Phuket, having visited the island several times in the past to paint murals in his signature style of psychedelic colors and graffiti lettering. Perhaps his best known piece here is the portrait of a young Thai girl, painted on a wall in the historic Soi Romanee in old Phuket Town, which has become somewhat of a landmark since.

He returned recently to complete a work commissioned by local resident Frank Couture, at his house in Chalong, as well as to bring some color to the lives of the kids at Phuket at the Sunshine Village Orphanage. Frank, who is also the President of the Phuket Sunshine Village Foundation, asked Noe if he would paint a mural at the orphanage while he was here and received an instant yes.

Frank kindly invited the Gazette team to visit his house to interview Noe Two and watch him in action; and I asked him how it all came about.

“Noe came to Phuket over a year ago on holiday and a painting trip. He found an old wall in Phuket Town, got authorization from the Governor to create art on it, and it was featured in the newspaper. I saw it and I thought… wow, this speaks to me. So I looked up his website to find out who he was, dropped him a message asking ‘When are you back in town?’ and he said in a year he would be back in Bangkok. So now a year later, he’s here!” says Frank.

While he was taking a break from his work – painting a mural of singer Erykah Badu – I had a chat with Noe about his evolution as an artist and how his art had helped him connect with people from across the globe. I soon found out that, despite having been inspired to take his name from the biblical story of Noah’s Ark, Noe’s own story has been one of constant evolution.

“Noe is Noah, from Noah’s Arc. I was very young and loved animals I wanted to choose the name of an animal; a lion, snake or tiger… but for me it was very cheap to do that. So after thinking I said, why not Noe? Because it’s related to animals and has three letters, so it is simple,” he said.

From his earlier days, spray-painting “tags” and illegal murals in the alleys and lanes of Paris as member of the groundbreaking graffiti crew RAW (Real Authentik Writa), his style and technique has expanded to include works of computer generated design, photo montage, video and acrylic on canvas.

“When I started graffiti, I tried to imitate New York style, but after you have more experience and become older you develop your own style. My letters have a lot of influence from New York, I would look at that graffiti art and try to do the same. But with time, I started working towards finding new ideas, new forms, new calligraphy.

As Noe grew older and moved away from the hectic lifestyle of illegal graffiti painting, Noe begun to look at other ways to express himself artistically.

“When you’re young, you’re all about speed, adrenaline, being crazy… but later in life you’re more chilled, quiet and mature… you think about things,” he told me.

“I used to do a lot of realistic characters when I was mostly working on walls, but then I stopped using walls and moved into photography and 3D art – so then I used the computer to design art. I moved away from graffiti because I want my paintings to last through time and on the computer, the art is not very ‘real’, you can’t touch it.”

His desire to leave the thrilling but sometimes fleeting world of illegal graffiti – where a mural that might have taken many hours and dozens of spray cans could be painted over the next day by unsympathetic authorities – took him towards other forms, such as paint on canvas.

“So I started with canvas and I tried to do graffiti on canvas, but it’s too small of a size. So I experimented with new ways, different forms and colors and tried to do a more abstract style, I began to put abstract colors in the faces, I did more and more, which led to this colorful portrait style.”

Many of Noe’s most iconic images are close-up female portraits. Initially he painted images of celebrities whose music or art have inspired him, but increasingly he prefers to do portraits of interesting people he meets as he works and travels around the world.

“Before I did famous people because I needed a model, so I looked for my models on websites. With Erykah Badu, I painted her because I like her look, her style – a very original style with the afro and so on. Sometimes I do famous models, like Natalia Vodianova, Adriana Lima.

“But now, when it’s possible, I try to meet people and if I like someone’s look, I’ll talk to the guy or the girl and see if it’s possible to take a photo and use that to paint from. But sometimes it’s complicated, they can get suspicious and question why I want a photo of them.”

Noe has now been painting for over 25 years and his art has taken him all over the world. He has collaborated with many artists to paint murals from the favelas of Brazil to New York, LA, Hong Kong, Beijing and even Mongolia. He said he is often inspired by local artistic styles, iconic cultural images, and the many people he meets on his travels and tries to incorporate this into his work. Judging from his enthusiasm for Thailand, Noe will no doubt be back again, so keep an eye out on in your area, you never know which wall might be his next.

To see more of Noe Two’s amazing portfolio click here.

Keep checking our Lifestyle pages for the latest happenings across Phuket. Alternatively, join our Facebook fan page or follow us on Twitter.

— Mark Knowles


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Tourism4 hours ago

Alcohol ban predicted to damage Thailand’s reopening, reputation

Crime5 hours ago

Woman who cut safety rope of workers offers feeble excuse

Video5 hours ago

Thailand News Today | Dirty gloves probe, Bocelli & Lisa, ASEAN fallout | October 27

Sponsored13 hours ago

Top 5 dental clinics by Dental Corporations PLC in Thailand

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 hours ago

Police seize Covid-19 antiviral drugs allegedly stolen by hospital manager

Thailand6 hours ago

Student dies after receiving second Covid-19 vaccine shot

Coronavirus (Covid-19)6 hours ago

Foreign Ministry denies blocking Poland’s donation of vaccines

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand6 hours ago

Travellers now exempt from quarantine advised to directly contact AQ hotels for refund

Crime7 hours ago

Legal proceedings expected this week for “Joe Ferrari” death in custody case

Coronavirus (Covid-19)8 hours ago

Wednesday Covid Update: 8,452 new cases; provincial totals

Bangkok8 hours ago

Police bust Bangkok pub serving alcohol, 61 arrested

Bangkok8 hours ago

Russell Crowe bids Bangkok goodbye after much-praised tweets

Thailand8 hours ago

Thai government forms panel to probe the export of used medical gloves

ASEAN9 hours ago

Myanmar no-show a focus as ASEAN summit gets underway

Drugs9 hours ago

Police arrest 3 vans in Korat with 1.82 tonnes of marijuana

Thailand9 hours ago

Sedatives and painkillers, Thai new year – 3 million USD on 2 people | Thaiger Bites | Ep. 47

Thailand1 month ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism8 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand8 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism8 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11