Nexgraff, Basque Urban Graffiti Artist
Euskara. Kultura. Mundura.
Nextor Otaño, aka ´Nexgraff´, has become one of the world’s best mural artists in only a few years. At just 20, he has already had a long artistic career. Climbing scaffolding and cranes with his father since he was a teen, Nexgraff have created large murals. Otaño’s work has earned him international acclaim in recent years and two of his murals are among the top 100 worldwide.
"While I appreciate planning, I make sure to leave space for spur-of-the-moment creativity, recognising that the true beauty of the end result comes alive on the walls"
NEXgraff: up-and-coming talent of street art
The young Basque mural artist Nextor Otaño (Pasaia, 2003), took his first steps in the world of graffiti at the age of thirteen. His passion for graffiti was ignited by a signature on a wall, prompting his family to actively support and strengthen his drawing skills. Today, at the age of 20, he is the most sought-after mural artist in the Basque Country and dreams of making a leap onto the international stage.
He took his initial steps into the world of mural art in 2016 and soon began formal to hone his technique. Since then, he has created brilliant realistic work. He continues to seek out new opportunities and proposals within this form of expression.
Nextor, together with his father, Aitor Otaño, form Nexgraff, an urban art project with the goal of evolving as artists and making an impact internationally.
Murals: from hip-hop to impressionism
Nexgraff plays with colours, creating imaginative portrait-based compositions. In the early years, Otaño painted faces related to rap culture, including Tupac, Shakur, Eminem, Hard GZ and Wiz Khalifa, among others. He also painted well-known figures from the Basque Country, such as Joxan Artze, Mikel Laboa and Berri Txarrak. He started with sprays, focusing on details. Nowadays, Nexgraff use acrylic paint for large-scale works, delving into the exploration of impressionistic and pictorial techniques, textures, and forms.
In the beginning Otaño used pre-existing images for his murals. Nowadays, he crafts original works where photographs, tools, and digital designs play a pivotal role in shaping the final design.
His name has become widely known thanks to the huge murals adorning outdoor walls and his active presence on social media. His first commissions were from private clients, mainly for murals on houses or shop shutters. As his work gained popularity, he started receiving commissions from city councils and other institutions, enabling him to undertake larger projects. Currently, his focus is on making the leap onto the international stage.
World’s best graffiti of 2023
Since 2020, Nextor Otaño has been proving his talent in top-level competitions. In the last editions of Spain’s Liga Nacional de Graffiti, he has been in the top 5: first in 2020, fourth in 2021, and second in 2022 and 2023.
In the 2021 Liga, he painted a mural on the Lizeo Pasaia fronton for 24 hours straight and was proclaimed champion of the Graffiti Battles category.
Nexgraff will compete for the World´s 100 Best Graffiti in 2023 in the Street Art Cities competition with his work in Ibarra and Baiona. In 2022, Allegory of music’ was one of the 10 best works graffiti in the world.
Two Nexgraff creations will compete in Street Art Cities in 2023. The first is ‘Granddaughter and grandmother in a garden in Ibarra’ (Ibarra, Gipuzkoa), which deals with the theme of agriculture and the passing down of cultural traditions.
The second is ‘A sheep in the arms, a chicken on the head, and a Tuareg?´ a blend of images designed to prompt each viewer to create their own interpretation. (Baiona, Lapurdi). It also features a self-portrait of the author.
The competition assesses hundreds of new murals produced annually, with a panel of experts and the community at large selecting the standout pieces.