The artist JR in Florence at Palazzo Strozzi

    L’artista JR a Firenze a Palazzo Strozzi

    Even Covid-19 couldn’t stop Hurricane JR, aka Jean René, one of the most well-known and highly rated photographers and artists of the moment.

    “Art is always possible, the greatest works have been created during wars and catastrophes,” claims the artist who has always believed in the power of art and its sharing to know and change the world.

    JR is a Parisian artist who works at the intersection of photography, street art, film and social engagement, also attracting the attention of a wide and diverse audience.

    In the last few months JR’s agenda has been full of commitments and we have often found him in Italy thanks to his collaboration with Galleria Continua, known as one of the most influential galleries in Italy and the world, with offices in Beijing, Havana, Sao Paulo, Rome and San Gimignano.

    Just in San Gimignano, on September 26, 2020, the collective performance entitled Processione Omélia Contadinatook place: a procession crossed the village carrying “on the shoulder”, with musical accompaniment, a large figure representing a farmer – a work by JR – which was buried at the end of the route. 

    The performance, which marked the inauguration of “Omelia Contadina”, JR’s solo exhibition held at Galleria Continua until May 2, 2021, was born from the need to recount the crisis of a world in profound transformation, the peasant world, harassed by the impositions of the market.

    Italian director Alice Rohrwacher, co-director of the short film of the same name premiered as part of the Special Screenings of the 77th Venice International Film Festival 2020, was also involved in the realization of the project. 

    JR also inaugurated on January 20, 2021 the new Parisian branch of Galleria Continua, an 800 square meter space a few steps from the Centre Pompidou, with an exhibition entitled “Truc à faire” open to the public until February 10, but on display until April 20, 2021.

    The intent of the project was to create an unconventional space, between a cathedral and a store, open to experimentation and inclined to live the space beyond the usual canons of exhibition design. 

    Not a white cube, but a meeting place where the works of artists of different generations, from five continents have been placed in every corner of the large building. Among these artists are Ai Weiwei, Daniel Buren, Anish Kapoor, Michelangelo Pistoletto and Pascale Marthine Tayou.

    Finally, the last intervention carried out in Italy, in Florence, again in collaboration with Galleria Continua and Palazzo Strozzi: it is a monumental installation 28 meters high and 33 meters wide with a very topical title: “The Wound”.

    JR proposes a sort of visual glimpse on the facade of the palace symbol of the Florentine Renaissance, which opens to the vision of an interior a little bit real and a little bit imagined.

    From March 19 until August 22, 2021, the work re-interprets the facade of the building, proposing a reflection on the accessibility of cultural sites in the era of Covid-19 that have lost an average of 75% of visitors, or 40 million less. 

    Arturo Galansino, Director of Palazzo Strozzi together with Andrea Concas, will talk about the project carried out by JR for Palazzo Strozzi on ClubHouse – the social network that talks about Art – for the Arte&Cultura program of ClubItalia. 

    And you, are you ready to discover the art of Parisian street artist JR?

    Photo Credits: JR

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