American born graffiti artist Retna is known for his complex and beautiful artworks that began popping up on the streets of Los Angeles during the 1990s.
Retna, aka Marquis Lewis, grew up mesmerised by the gang graffiti that surrounded him in Los Angeles. Influenced by the style and freedom attributed to the art form, he began creating his own graffiti and quickly established one of the largest collectives in the city. During this time, he developed his own unique style, which fused together influences from ancient Incan and Egyptian hieroglyphics, Arabic, Hebrew, Asian calligraphy and graffiti – creating his iconic artworks which look like undiscovered ancient scripts.
In 2011, Retna held his first solo art exhibition – The Hallelujah Work tour in New York. His compositions were powerful, attracting the likes of R&B artist Usher, who commissioned him to create a portrait of Marvin Gaye. This commission transformed Retna from street artist to a break-out star of the contemporary art world. His paintings and limited edition prints are now some of the most sought-after pieces on the market.