Wherever it takes place, the ritual is always the same: “initiates” meet, slip on their gloves and borrow the mask of Hadès, i.e. the capacity of invisibility, to become one night Persée defying the gorgones…
The rite is regulated, fixed and codified: to dissimulate, and hide from the cameracyclope, to be on the look out and face the cerces of safety. Forced doors, sheared fences, located paths, in the middle of darkness, the procession advances. Grabbed by a telluric force, penetrating the hide out of the monster: the hunt is opened and the feast is about to begin: the fool becomes king. The subway sleeps, benefiting from its lethargy, we make-up his head and, and by photographing him we steal his heart. Without turning our back and returning to surface with just one image: One evening Totem. The search is useless and the act gratuitous… who cares, the trophies are torn off within the entrails of the cities for decorating our mounting soon.
5 days / 5 paintings
Within the real danger and the risk taking, to substitute a simulated urgency: to impose an artificial constraint of time, finding the rhythm of the ritual. The show stops here, literally no graffiti, no photographs, graffiti is elsewhere, where it belongs: outside, below us… Graffiti being considered here as a “practice”, an act with a “symbolic” character, the forms included in the work authorizes and justifies its medium: canvas.
5 paintings / 5 masks
the act to paint a subway is thus like “condensed” through a mask: a ritual object by excellence since it occults and shows at the same time… Fetish and marionette, the mask becomes like a metaphor, a choice of life: the one of a “writer“.
5 masks / 5 cities
A geographically conquest, strategic covering of subways ritually embanked, disfigured and symbolically decapitated. The metropolitan hydra deploys its ramifications to all of Europe, each subway is singular, with colors of its city, five canvases to create an monstrous heraldic: Berlin, Rotterdam, Moscow, Bucharest, Athens. Would the living legend Honet, like to become the hero of its own myth? The masks stare at you, disfigure you, do you which to enter this macabre farandole or remain astonished on the threshold, and perhaps forever, who knows?
© Cedric Gues, septembre 2006 / Speerstra Gallery