Here is my second article about street art and graffiti legends. I’m taking advantage of the upcoming release of the book “C215 – Christian Guemy stencil art” to write an article about an artist I particularly like. To tell you the truth C215 ignited my passion for street art. A few years ago I went to visit a friend who lived in Vitry-Sur-Seine, a town a few kilometres from Paris. When I left the train station I found myself facing a painted letter box representing the portrait of a child. I was speechless admiring this art masterpiece. When I got home, I sat down at my computer and tried to find out who the artist was who had signed this work “C215”. The next day I was back in Vitry-Sur-Seine, camera in hand, looking for more artworks. And that’s how my passion for urban art began. Anyway, thanks Christian Guemy for helping me discover urban art.
Who is C215?
C215 aka Christian Guémy is a French street artist, working mostly with stencils. He was born in 1973 in the suburbs of Paris and has transformed the area of Vitry sur Seine, into an open-air museum by covering the walls with hundreds of stencilled artworks.
His first artworks were graffiti, but he quickly abandoned lettering and start painting using stencils.
In 2006, he published two collections of poems written for his daughter Nina and asked street artists to illustrate them. He then started to develop his own stencils and art form. The first portraits he produced were those of his daughter and her mother.
C215 is a key artist on the contemporary urban art scene in France and around the world. He paints street portraits of random men and women with a spray can and stencils. Faces of strangers who live in the neighbourhood: the homeless, refugees, children, the elderly. Always with a humanist perspective, C215 will focus on those who are marginalised and left behind in society in order to highlight them in public spaces. Anonymous people are the stars of his work.
C215 is a street poet who in each of his works shows the happiness and sadness of the world around us. He also paints lighter subjects and likes to draw animals, in particular cats and sometimes his dog.
C215 also likes to challenge himself by painting illustrious people in today’s cities. The colourful stencils reaffirm the daily presence of these great figures. Passers-by will meet lively and protruding eyes around the streets. A committed artist, C215 invites you to delve into his extraordinary works and meet personalities who, through their actions, embodied the destiny of France or sometime even the world.
Where can we discover c215 stencils artworks?
C215 humanises the streets of capitals around the world. He is an inspired globetrotter who has left his mark in Paris, Vitry-Sur-Seine, London, Manchester, New York, Rome, Barcelona, Sao Paulo and Berlin to name but a few.
His favourite backdrops are phone and post boxes, electric meters, walls and doors. Open your eyes when you walk in one of the cities where he has painted. You might discover a C215 masterpiece. Some are well hidden. I recently discovered a stencil of C215 on an old door in Shoreditch, London. I’ve been roaming the streets of this London neighbourhood for years yet had never spotted it before.
To discover C215 work in photo and text
I invite you to discover two exceptional books which will give you a good overview of C215’s work.
C215 – The monograph Book
“The art of C215 is to capture light, depth and humanity. It is very difficult to stencil your favourite medium and rarely succeeded. This technique tends to flatten the images and make them static. On the contrary, C215 has developed a style of illustration and cutting that reveals the deep personality of its subjects, bringing them an impressionist perspective. Although his technique is meticulous, in the most refined sense of the term, the art of C215 transcends pure form and seems to touch the very essence of the human soul. It’s always a pleasure to see C215’s works in the street. » Shepard Fairey aka OBEY
The first monograph of a French street artist: Christian Guémy, alias C215.
A thematic alphabet, illustrated and commented on by the artist, allowing you to understand the richness of his universe: Amsterdam, Architecture, Artists, Athens, Ava, Barcelona, Berlin, Blue, etc … A stencil is included at the end of the book. You will see fantastic pictures of C215 artworks. Its definitely a book to have in your bookshelf if you like urban art or contemporary art.
You can order C215 – The monograph Book HERE.
C215 “Christian Guemy – The art of stencil”
“My works place invisible people in the rank of celebrities. Through these faces, I want passers-by to confront their own humanity.” C215 aka Christian Guemy
The tone is set. With his paintings Christian Guémy, alias C215, is one of the greatest urban artists of our time. He wants to change the world. Following C215’s footsteps is like entering a kaleidoscopic world of sensations and emotions where each movement brings surprises. His art is not only visual, it is not just political provocation or social criticism. The discovery of a face, a fleeting encounter, designed to permeate the mind.
Since becoming famous in 2008, when Banksy invited him to collaborate on different projects, C215 continues his work on the streets. Considered as one of the most important stencil artists in the world today, he has painted, drawn, tagged and photographed his works for almost 20 years. The pictures he delivers of his own vision and experience are a precious testimony that enriches this intimate portrait. Courted by galleries and museums, which “are places of conservation”. “The street, it devours, transforms, destroys” and that’s what he likes. A book that travels to the heart of his art and reveals his most important works from Paris to New York, via London, Los Angeles, New York, Rome, Istanbul, New Delhi but also Brazil, Morocco, Poland and Israel.
The Book will be released in early January 2020 and you can already pre-order it HERE
Other available books about C215 artworks.
You can have more information about them or purchase them by clicking on the pictures
C215 on social networks
C215 Photo Gallery
Photos: By C215 and StreetArt360