JR puts New York centre stage, from ballet to Ellis Island

’Unframed, Nurses
’Unframed, Nurses at Ellis Island Hospital’, by JR, 2014. Courtesy of Ellis Island Immigration Museum, USA
(Image credit: Ellis Island Immigration Museum)

Frieze fever may be over, but there’s still plenty of reason to linger in the English capital as Lazarides Rathbone gallery launches an exhibition by the Parisian artist JR. The self-styled photograffeur – a portmanteau that marries his photography and graffiti art practices – is presenting all-new works from a duet of recent series, Les Bosquets (2014-present) and Unframed Ellis Island (2014-present).

Spread over two floors of the London gallery, the show, entitled ‘Crossing’, pits large-scale colour prints against the enigmatic artist’s provocative black-and-white paper artworks.

The Unframed Ellis Island project explores New York’s historic gateway to the millions of immigrants that entered the United States. It’s a series that is sure to strike a chord for many of the exhibition’s visitors, echoing Europe’s spiralling migrant crisis (opens in new tab). A short film (starring a suitably gravelly Robert De Niro and penned by Eric Roth) is a particularly haunting tribute to the landmark’s now-abandoned hospital, which has been taken over JR’s riveting art installations.

It’s a stark contrast to the spirit-lifting troupe of ballet dancers arcing fluidly across the second series on view. Created in collaboration with the New York City Ballet, Les Bosquets saw JR step into the choreographer’s seat for the first timewas inspired by his inaugural art project, Portrait of a Generation, and the 2005 riots in France (opens in new tab).

To mark the London show, Phaidon is publishing the first major monograph on the artist, available for purchase now (opens in new tab). Eschewing the traditional foreword, the new tome introduces JR’s story with a specially commissioned graphic novel by comic artist Joseph Remnant, and charts his meteoric rise from street artist to urban activist.

Les Bosquets

French artist JR recently unveiled all-new works from a duet of recent series, ’Les Bosquets’ (2014-present) and ’Unframed Ellis Island’ (2014-present), at Lazarides Rathbone gallery in London.

(Image credit: Nathalie Théry)

Unframed Ellis Island

The ’Unframed Ellis Island’ project explores New York’s historic gateway to the millions of immigrants that entered the United States.

(Image credit: Nathalie Théry)

Watch the trailer for Ellis here, staring Robert De Niro, written by Eric Roth, and directed by JR

London gallery

Spread over two floors of the London gallery, the show, entitled ‘Crossing’, pits large-scale colour prints against the artist’s provocative black-and-white paper artworks.

(Image credit: Nathalie Théry)

28 Millimètres

’28 Millimètres, Portrait of a generation, Les Bosquets, Eye See You, Montfermeil, France’, by JR, 2014

(Image credit: press)

Portrait of a generation

’28 Millimètres, Portrait of a generation, Les Bosquets, Jeté cambré, Montfermeil, France’, by JR, 2014

(Image credit: press)

Unframed Ellis Island

’Unframed Ellis Island’ is sure to strike a chord for many of the exhibition’s visitors, echoing Europe’s spiralling migrant crisis. 

(Image credit: Nathalie Théry)

Czech grand mother

’Unframed, Czech grand mother in Ellis Island’, by JR, 2014. Courtesy of National Park Service, Statue of Liberty National Monument, USA

(Image credit: National Park Service)

’Crossing’

Installation view of ’Crossing’.

(Image credit: Nathalie Théry)

INFORMATION

‘Crossing’ runs until 12 November 2015

ADDRESS

Lazarides
11 Rathbone Place
London W1T 1HR

VIEW GOOGLE MAPS