Born in Lyon, France, Charles Munka has spent much of his adult life in Asia. Captivated by Manga art and Japanese film, Munka moved to Japan to work in the video game industry. He then moved from Tokyo to Shanghai and now resides in Hong Kong.
Munka’s early works were strongly influenced by hip-hop and the progressive L.A. beat scene. He took the more traditional elements from these scenes and fused them with contemporary and historical imagery from film, video games, pop art and abstract expressionism. When he moved to Tokyo, Munka became fascinated by Asian urban landscapes, construction maps and city plans, which he often uses as a background for his paintings.
Taking a step away from Graffiti and Manga, Munka’s current approach transforms the vibrations of the urban street corners into lush, sophisticated works of art, presented in galleries worldwide. His work has evolved into an encryption and direct expression of the struggles and discoveries of his own life as an artist and a modern nomad. Munka’s paintings are sizable, rich with expressive paint strokes, meaningful pictograms and text.
Munka’s most recent works are influenced by Epic classics, such as the Iliad and Odyssey, in which heroes struggle and endure trials on the path to reaching their ultimate goal. The character’s journeys are filled with magnificent moments and drama, with the exploration of oneself lying at the center. Inspiration from these literary figures intertwined with his own life experiences, creates what Munka describes as his own mind map.