Tuesday, January 26, 2010

May 2008: Jana + JS in Paris

When I see a wall covered in street art, my first instinct is to photograph it. But what if that same street art was poised to take a photo of you? Jana and JS create intricate stencils that depict people with cameras popping out of alleys, phone booths, and sidewalks. While they live many miles apart, they still find time to collaborate on big pieces. They write:
JS: I cut and painted my first stencils when I lived in Madrid between 2003 and 2004. I met Jana who also lived in Madrid, at the same time!
Jana: I started a year later back in Austria.
JS: When Jana came to settle in Paris in 2007, we really started working together, and soon we designed our work with a joint identity.

We are part of the WCA Collective. It was founded in 2005 by Artiste-Ouvrier and includes others like 6lex and Marybel. Today, it is more difficult to work together because we live so far from each other. However, we still have joint projects, such as an exhibition that took place in October in Paris.”
JS: I was introduced to the technique of cutting and painting that we use by Artiste-Ouvrier, whom I met on my return to France in 2005. But we're both photo enthusiasts, and all our work is inspired by the photos we take. Our style was therefore built around the desire to create images on the border of painting and photography. We try to keep frames, structures and realistic prospects in tact while still playing with the forms and technical aspects like the stencil and spray.

"It is difficult to speak of an ideal location, but we like the old walls best. We especially love the places where our work is meaningful, either because the two are related or because the sites can interact with the environment.”
We were recently in Vienna this for the installation of our exhibition at Galerie Inoperable. The opening took place on Saturday, January 16.

Merci, Jana + JS! For more photos of their photos, visit their Flickr.

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