Christian Guémy aka C215 is a French street artist based in Vitry-sur-Seine “The French Open sky museum”, situated in the nearby suburb of Paris. He has been described by the UK Press as the French alternative to Banksy.
Beginning from the 20th of may 2017, C215 presents his new artworks for a solo show at Galerie OpenSpace « La mauvaise education ». This new path in C215 career is a great opportunity to tell you more about this exceptional French artist who has become over time one of the most famous street artists in the world.
Who is C215 ?
Born in 1973 in an eastern suburb of Paris, he’s now based in Vitry-sur-Seine for more than ten years. C215 is at the origin of the artistic and aesthetic transformation of this grey industrial city. At present hundreds of his stencils can be seen on walls all around the city. He’s probably one of the most prolific street artists of his generation.
For C215 “street art is a political art” A strong way to express cultural views, sociological and philosophical messages.
Each individual stencil is not only a splendid aesthetic artwork but above all holds a message ! It can be a cry of revolt, a political point of view, an emotional state … C215 uses his stencil like a writer will use a pencil ! He doesn’t make art for art but constantly seeks to challenge people thinking.
In my opinion he’s like a XXIst century Voltaire or Rousseau using a spray can.
He publicly stands up to injustice, racism, homophobia, and anti-Semitism, and so many other topics feed his daily plight.
His artworks inspiration :
His work consists mainly of close up coloured portraits of people.
A look at modern society and its injustices. Like homeless people, refugees, natives from different ethnic communities living in France, sad or happy faces of street children, faces marked by time of the elderly … Every C215 stencil shows strong expressions charged with meaning. Each of these artworks portray either an emotion, a feeling, a state of soul …
A screenshot of political life, he draws portraits of several political personalities to show his admiration or disapprouval for the subject. The most famous examples are his Obama Portrait in Paris 13 or Christiane Taubira in Vitry sur Seine …
An acknowledgment to many celebrities that feel significant to him : Cinema stars, Football players, Sebastien Chabal (the famous french Rugby player) , Renaud the commited french singer, Coluche the humorist and mostly the founder of Resto du Coeur ( Charity restaurants in france), …
His loves, his loved ones, his life …
You will also see in his artworks portraits of his daughter, friends, some self portraits too. … A nice way to tell them « I love you. »
Also animals. He loves especially cats, he has painted hundreds of felines all around the world, and sometimes dogs (one of which is fantastic and can be seen in Vitry sur Seine close to David Walker famous female portrait and the portrait by Findac of an asian girl)
Where can You Discover C215 Artworks ?
C215 is a prolific street artist and has practiced his art in cities all over the world. You will find his stencils nearly everywhere. The hotspots to discover his murals are Vitry-Sur-Seine (His open sky Gallery) , Paris, Berlin, London (Shoreditch) , Rome, Amsterdam, Barcelona …
“La mauvaise education” C215’s solo show in Paris.
The exhibition takes place in Paris from 20th may until 1st july 2017, in the famous urban art Gallery of the « city of lights » Galerie Openspace, 116, boulevard Richard Lenoir 75011 Paris.
C215 presents for this important spring art event in France, approximately fifty portraits of French and international political figures, personalities from modern and contemporary history, medias and culture, etc …
As like his previous exhibition « Douce France », visitors will have to strongly pay attention to the relationship between the subject matter and the chosen support. It will be key to understand the works without however limiting their reading. C215 likes to play with « canvas » and subject . It gives a new dimension and strength to each artwork.
« La Mauvaise réputation » is a reflection of society at this time : it is full of political uncertainty and contradictions with many concerns attached. This exhibition aims to raise questions about our present day world in its light and dark surroundings. It will question everyone to rethink their morals and values through visualizing these symbols and icons witch retrospectively may change our thinking of how we view ourselves.
Don’t miss this amazing exhibition if you’re in paris, and visit Vitry-sur-Seine to have an overview of the evolution of C215’s street artwork.