The fourth and final day of the Paris salon to street art, Le M.U.R. de l’Art, and artist interviews with H1010, Mosko et associes, Jana und JS, Göla Hundun, No Rules Corp, Bustart, Beerens, Missy, Kashink, FKDL, Alber, Rensone, looking at the what the future of the street art movement holds in store, and live painting performances.
Just a note about the footage of the last few days:
It’s been of a commercial artwork exhibition by artists recognised for producing artwork in the streets for free. There is nothing wrong with selling artwork off of the back of a reputation built up in the streets, but the exhibition was nothing to do with street art. When an artist is speaking to people who may want to buy their work the element of generosity inherent in un-commissioned street art – produced as art, rather than as publicity – is removed
The exhibition was organised to raise funds for Le M.U.R., an important platform to promote street artists. The effect of being invited to make Le M.U.R. can be an increased public demand for artwork produced by the artist. All of the artists involved in this exhibition are a particular breed of street artist. Street art is not savvy to the art market, or at least it shouldn’t be in our opinion.
Every one of us must make money to live, and there is a very strong argument that street artists selling artwork to live is better for street art than them working in unrelated jobs that, perhaps, leave not enough time to spend making art. But commerce degrades the legitimate intentions of unsanctioned street artwork and the last four days we’ve covered this commercial exhibition must be viewed only through these goggles.
Le M.U.R. de l’Art is not street art. Long live Le M.U.R. (and all the fantastic artists involved past, present and future).
Love, peace and prosperity!
Photo: Richard Beban & Paris Play copyright 2012
l’Association Le M.U.R.
Mur is, of course, the word in French for ‘wall’ and the association heads up the three by eight metre former billboard advertising space, at 107 rue Oberkampf in the 11th arrondissment, which has had a different street artist create artwork onto its surface every two weeks since 2007.
What is essentially an institutionalised space for urban art is, however, not a product of bureaucrats trying to funnel teenage angst, but rather born from an ongoing campaign of intelligent, yet illegally and aggressively realised street art, made by some of Paris’ high-minded individuals who produce street art for a number of reasons, one being to demonstrate against the appropriation of public space by commercial advertisers,
Jean Faucheur and Thomas Schmitt founded Le M.U.R., and helped orchestrate illegal art campaigns such as the illegal billboard hijacking of 2002 , Une Nuit, which involved 60 billboard-sized artworks prepared by 60 or so artists over three months, pasted up just in the 11th arrondissment in one night (and a day).
This grand illegal street art campaign was a forerunner to the organisation, which established itself officially in 2007 and now exists with the support of the Mairie de Paris. Each artist who makes Le MUR is given a stipend of €500 to cover travel and materials expenses, and each new artwork is realised in place of the previous, thus continuing the principle of ephemeral street art. The exhibition, Le M.U.R de L’ART, fits into the logic of the association continuing to promote artists.
Since Le M.U.R. became an official association, more than 120 artists have been invited to produce artwork at the wall, and in 2012 the project has launched in other places. The 13th arrondissement (with an already sympathetic position towards mural art by those recognised for illegal street art – see Alternative Paris’ article and interviews and documentary on Shepard Fairey’s recent 13-storey high Paris mural) was born at Quai François Mauriac in July, and another one appeared in Normandy, on the beach of Arromanches. And a fourth wall was inaugurated in Marseilles in September.
The Le M.U.R de L’ART Exhibition
Located on rue Vieille du Temple, 75003 Paris, l’Espace d’animation des Blancs Manteaux is a unique venue in Paris and has a very rich yet quite unknown history. Constructed in the 15th century, the building has always evolved, and has never remained fixed into one singular activity. It is now dedicated to the arts and sports, but was at times a hotel, a hospital and even a convent garden.
Artists taking part in Le M.U.R de L’ART, as follows: