Dans Les Entrailles Du Palais Secret [In The Entrails Of The Secret Palais] is an intervention created in the basement of the Palais de Tokyo, and follows the astonishing Le Mausolée project (video below), presented earlier this year by French graffiti artists, Lek & Sowat.
This latest project has been realised in the basement passages, spaces that have never been open to the public, let alone used to show art, and are certainly stay loyal to the original roots of graffiti, regardless of being inside an institutional contemporary art museum.
The artists ‘curating’ the project are Lek & Sowat. Lew learnt his craft between the north-east Parisian districts of La Chapelle and Stalingrad, where French street culture emerged. He works with the crews French Kiss, LCA, GNS, RAW and 1984, and practices abstract graffiti, directly connected to the artistic culture that started on the sides of New York subway cars in the 1970s and 1980s – self admittedly, “graffiti”, not street art.
Meanwhile, Sowat is a Franco-American graffiti artist who grew up between Marseille and Los Angeles. He was inspired by Chaz Bojorquez, an important figure in the Californian graffiti scene, who developed “Cholo writing”, a calligraphy used to mark the territories of Latino gangs in Los Angeles. Sowat is part of the Paris graffiti crew, Da Mental Vaporz.
Both artists habitually find abandoned spaces in which to create artistic interventions. The curatorial idea of this project was to reproduce the feeling of Le Mausolée, and this sort of urban exploration, and the bringing together of artists from other generations with different artistic practices.
Other artists who were involved in the creation of Dans Les Entrailles Du Palais Secret at Palais de Tokyo, are as follows:
ALËXONE, AZYLE, BABS, BOM.K, COKNEY, DEM189, DRAN, HONDA, HORFÉ, KATRE, LEK, OUTSIDER, RIZOTE, SAMBRE, SETH, SOWAT, SWIZ, VELVET, WXYZ, ZOER
The Palais de Tokyo installation is inspired by Lek & Sowat’s, Le Mausolée project – one of the most astonishing ever illegal graffiti interventions, which was unveiled in 2012. Produced over a year long period by 40 of France’s best graffiti artists at a 430,000 square foot abandoned supermarket at Porte de Pantin in north Paris, you can watch a stop-motion video of the event, below:
Palais de Tokyo
13 Avenue du Président Wilson, 75016 Paris
Runs until 1st September, 2013