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Visual Artist Oibel1 talks about our duty to spread love

Nov 11, 2022

Samora Bazarrabusa, also known as Oibel1, is a visual artist from Zurich. I’ve contacted Oibel after seeing his art on Instagram and in our city and I’m so happy to share this conversation with you! I couldn’t have wished for a better last episode for season 1 of my podcast. It’s like a joyful firework! Oibel basically sums up perfectly what the Joy Academy is all about and it was so much fun and joy to hear it coming from this wonderful being that is doing something so differently than me but with the exact same mission! Spread love and joy and inspire people to do the same. Spoiler alert, self-love is important! Enjoy. : )

(Spoiler alert number two, these show notes are full of quotes, because this man just hits one quote after the other!)

“I’ve basically been an artist all my life”, Oibel

It all started at a young age, when Oibel got into graffiti and it never stopped since then. “I create what I enjoy and I hope that there’s other people that enjoy it as well”, Oibel explains in answer to my question: What brings you joy? 

“One thing feeds the other and it’s all like a nice little circle that ends up in the same place again and starts over and over and over. First of all you have to start with yourself”, Oibel

The relationship with yourself has to be good first in order for you to have good relationships with other human beings and also with things. 

“It starts with loving yourself - you can’t skip that part!”, Oibel

“It’s a duty to spread love”, Oibel

“Happiness is a choice, it’s a choice of mind”, Oibel

“Everybody is a work in progress, it never stops, that’s life”, Oibel

“The easiest way to create joy is to first find joy in being yourself and then you can bring it out to the world”, Oibel

Yes. Most of the things are easier said than done. The seemingly easy things are often the most difficult. Oibel compares this to the art he creates. It’s seemingly simple because it’s just made up of a few lines, but these lines have to be exactly in place because if they're not then it doesn't look right. “I can’t hide it with some effects or shadowing. If the line is not right, then it doesn’t look right”, Oibel adds. 

“When something is simple, you have to be really honest with it”, Oibel

Oibel says that he’s not sure if he consciously made all the choices and decisions that lead up to where he is today or if he in hindsight started to realize that that's ”just” how things work. “You have to have self awareness because when you’re being delusional, that’s when you start going down the wrong paths and end up in places where you don’t want to be”. 

There’s this philosophical question: “If you were the only living organism on earth, would you know who you are?” You need the reaction of others to understand what you’re doing and to shine the light on what/who you are. 

Oibel says that he feels very privileged and is super grateful for having been born in Zurich, Switzerland: “I wish more people would value what they already have and what is just given to them, which is not to be taken for granted. Nothing is to be taken for granted. I think if you live with this mindset, you’re the most thankful person with everything that you have at all times.”

“I believe in energies that exist and that are somehow around us. To tap into those is what we’ve unlearned over the past years. We put ourselves in this golden cage and don’t really see what is really valuable. Most of the people put value on material things which I think is short term thinking. You have to renew them all the time, because they lose their value”, Oibel 

We talk about Oibel’s background and if his parents supported his journey to become an artist. He says that he used to be surrounded by art. His father worked in animation and his mother was always into art, like patchworking and pottery, as well. Nonetheless it was important to his mother that Oibel learnt a “safe” job to fall back on, if things wouldn’t work out, so he did an apprenticeship as a painter. 

I ask Oibel to tell a story about the wall in Zurich that he painted in 2021. It’s such a great and very inspiring story! For years he passed this wall and thought that it would be so cool to do something with it, but he never found the time to actually go there, take photos and make an offer to the owner. But one day in 2020 he finally stopped, took that photo, made a mock-up with an existing painting and put it on his Instagram feed. Then he basically forgot about it. When he came home that day and went on Instagram, a DM was waiting for him. The owner of the house got wind of it and contacted him to say that he’s interested! 9 months later the wall is looking A M A Z I N G  and I enjoy it every single time that I pass by with my bicycle. “There are plenty more dream walls in my mind”, Oibel says laughing.

Oibel offers his art in a lot of ways. Besides selling his pictures on canvas, he also sells things like mugs and t-shirts. 

“I want to make my art accessible for as many people as I can”, Oibel

During vacation time Oibel offers workshops for children. The customized design workshops are based on pieces, like sneakers, that the kids bring themselves. Oibel helps them develop their ideas and put them into an art work. “If you have this much space or this whole house that you can paint, the thought process is the same. You have to be aware of your space and that then determines what you can do with the space and the surface”. 

“I’m chasing feelings, not ideas. The idea I have is more like a feeling that I would like to manifest onto something. If the visual of that feeling in the beginning was a circle and I end up with the square but it still feels like the circle that I thought of in the beginning, I’m fine with it”, Oibel says. 

“I just keep on moving and try to make the best of that. In the end, if you pull through, it turns out nice because you made the best of it”, Oibel 

“Learn something about yourself instead of always changing direction or stopping before you even made the first step”, Oibel

“In what people see in my art work, I learn a lot about myself”, Oibel

Oibel says that he doesn’t like to name his art, because he wants people to decide for themselves what they see. That’s the point where some viewers get into conflict with themselves, because they’re shocked about what they see or feel when looking at a picture. 

“At the end of the day there is no right or wrong”, Oibel

Oibel talks about how art provokes an emotion. As a creator but also as a viewer of art, it’s like a mirror of yourself, because whatever you think or feel in the moment that you encounter the piece of art, that is the pure you. Instead of just walking away because you don’t like it, ask yourself why you don’t like it. “I believe there should be more art all over the place and in every corner, on every wall, just everywhere, because the more people find themselves and therefore start to accept and love themselves, the less hate will be out there”, Oibel says.

I love this perspective! Oibel explains how people dislike people that are doing “their thing”. It’s a reminder to them that they are not doing their thing. “You’re unconsciously reminding them that it actually is possible to be yourself and to have success with it or feel good with it and go down your path. That’s what makes you happy in the end. Paychecks don’t make you happy.”

“What is the definition of success? If you’re happy and you’re healthy, I would say that you live a successful life”, Oibel

“Try to make a living with what you love to do. If everybody would follow down that path, nobody really would have to do things that they don’t want to because everybody could do something that they’re passionate about. For every profession there is somebody who does it with a passion, who loves doing it”, Oibel

My bookkeeper is like that. I loath doing bookkeeping but she simply loves it. She glows up when working with numbers! I can give her all my receipts and bills in a glorious mess and she just does her magic and enjoys doing her work! And when she visits my office to pick up all the paperwork, she wears a pink sweater to match my pink wall. : ) She’s the best!  

“The good things come to those that create. If you do nothing, nothing will come of it”, Oibel

Oibel’s message to the world: 

“It’s your duty to spread love and you have to start with yourself. You have to love yourself first. Once you love yourself you can love the next person and then that’s a chain reaction, it’s contagious. If everybody feels love for themselves, they will have less hate for others because they don’t remind them of something that they also should or could be doing. I really believe that that’s where the root is. If that’s not aligned, things go off track and that’s again a chain reaction that spirals into more bad stuff and can end up with war. You can change something. Start with your own little surroundings. Everybody is a little influencer in their own little circle and it only takes one person that you can influence in a nice way and that goes on to the next and to the next and it never stops”. 

I’m so grateful for another wonderful wonderful episode that simply blew my mind! This marks the ending of this podcast season, but I’ll be back with season 2! Stay tuned for more magic and joy and inspiration and stories and much more. In the meantime listen back to old episodes, there’s so much wisdom in all the conversations that I’ve had in the past two years and I’ll continue sharing them with the world. Take care and see you soon back on this podcast! 

P.S. If you’re not on my joy letter list yet, make sure you join HERE so that you don’t miss the launch of the next podcast series. 

This is where you can find Oibel1 online: 


Things that we’ve talked about:

Humans of New York:

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