The London street art scene has had a bit of a French invasion with the eagerly anticipated Connecting Lines show from City of Talents coming to one of the area’s newest exhibition venues, the Black and White Building in Shoreditch.
We’d been given the heads up about the show from the curator Jean Claude Geraud who, although based in Toulouse, had the unenviable job of collating works from around 45 artists mainly from France to hang in the gallery.
The space itself is a co-working venue with a open exhibition space with the shows supported by Creative Debuts an agency whose primary aim is to support emerging artists. This is done by seeking seek to tackle many of the barriers which stand in front of artists and prevent them from being able to sell and effectively promote their work. Creative Debuts helps with things such as exposure, fees, storage space and of course providing the experience of exhibition itself.
As we visited the venue a few days before the show, the work was being hung inside whilst outside a giant mural was in the midst of being painted, a collaboration piece between Paris based artist Kan DMV and Toulouse’s Samy Stop. They told us how, as the whole idea of the show is about connecting, they thought that they’d connect their styles together although they’d never painted together before.
Kan is an artist who has evolved from a graffiti background doing throw ups and finding walls to paint at night to doing murals and large street pieces in the Parisian suburbs and around the world with the Da Mental Vaporz crew. Often better known as DMV the crew also features the likes of Bom.K another French artist who back in the day we featured on this blog as he visited London to paint a pretty impressive looking wall on Hanbury Street.
Kan now works with dots of colour in order to build up recognisable images and here in the courtyard he’s done just that, a pink face which when you look from afar, reveals itself to be frowning. Samy Stop meanwhile comes from a more traditional art background moving into street art from illustration and now part of the exciting Toulouse street scene. His work is more detailed and illustrative.
Together their mural in the yard depicts three faces moving from sad to happy with the in-between image a combination of the two styles. The happy skin being placed over the sad. It’s simple but effective and a good way to welcome people to the show which features a plethora of other French artists inside.
They both even managed to find time to draw a sketch each in the Inspiring City black book and that in itself was pretty revealing with Kan going back to his roots and doing a cool little throw up, the type of which would no doubt have found it’s way tagged onto the walls of his youth. Whilst Stop chose the finest tip pen I had to sketch a detailed illustration of a spray painting youth. Some pretty different styles for sure and you can see their techniques in the little videos in the gallery below,
Connecting lines is a group show hosted by City of Talents at the Black and White Building on Rivington Street in Shoreditch. It is supported by Creative Debuts. The show runs from 3 August 2017 to 3 September 2017 and you can see the catalogue here.
Connecting Lines Gallery