Veg Celeb: Street Art Throwdown's Justin Bua - Vegetarian Times

Veg Celeb: Street Art Throwdown's Justin Bua

Justin Bua’s art spans not just galleries and museums, but also the street. Additionally, he serves as host, co-judge, and executive producer on Oxygen's Street Art Throwdown. A longtime vegan, he recently developed the Bua Bar. We chatted with him about making stone-ground chocolate, raising his daughter vegan, and more.
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Photo: Mark DeJohn

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Justin Bua’s art spans not just galleries and museums, but also the street. Additionally, he serves as host, co-judge, and executive producer on Oxygen's competition series Street Art Throwdown. A longtime vegan, he recently developed the Bua Bar.

What makes art “street art”?

Anything done on the street, whether legal or illegal. Back in the day, most street art was illegal, but now more and more walls are sanctioned and legal. There is a distinct difference between street art and graffiti; street art was born out of graffiti, and does or does not have to do with lettering, as opposed to graff, which is way more lettering-centric and relies more heavily on words and characters.

For the competition series Street Art Throwdown, what do you look for in a budding street artist?

These guys are wildly creative raw talent, and some of them have that artistic “it” factor. I’m looking for artists that are able to handle the intense conditions, paint under pressure, and raise the bar by getting better and better while finding creative solutions to difficult visual problems.

One of the ingredients of your Bua Bar is stone-ground chocolate. Why stone-ground? 

These stones minimally refine the cacao beans, capturing all their vibrant flavors. So the short answer is, it tastes better!

You’re raising your daughter vegan. Any tips for other vegan-minded parents?

Yes. Don’t let anyone scare you. People are so fear-based that they can easily be blinded by their own paranoia. My 10-year-old daughter is beautiful, intelligent, and resourceful. She can handle herself with regard to the vegan discussion, but when ignorant parents ask, “Where does she get her protein?” or “Aren't you afraid she's going to be weak and anemic?” I simply show them a video of her in jujitsu class choking out a 20-pound heavier boy. She is a practitioner of both judo and jujitsu.