Sunday, July 11, 2010

Spain, Ibiza: August 22-September 19, 2010: XENZ

These Flowers Grow Wild

La Hora Azul presents
August 22-September 19, 2010
Private View: Saturday, August 21, 2010, 19:00-23:00

Celebrated British aerosol artist, Xenz, announces a 'pop up' show in Ibiza at La Hora Azul gallery in August 2010

One of the UK’s most respected spray can artists, Xenz, lands in Ibiza this August 21 to create an exhibition of new artworks inspired by the Balearic Islands' ethereal essence. Known as the 'Monet of graffiti' – so-called because he channels his love of nature through this traditionally urban art form – Xenz is a major figure to emerge from the infamous Bristol street art scene.

Earlier this year, the artist visited Ibiza in search of inspiration and the result is a series of paintings featuring the island's native birds, butterflies, vines, and flowers presented as a mosaic-style masterpiece comprising hundreds of small canvas tiles, which collectively form a mural.

Xenz explains: "My aim is to develop a community around these mosaics, where people who come to the show are the only ones to ever see it in its complete state – a bit like seeing graffiti before it’s buffed or destroyed. Each participant becomes part-owner of the mural – almost like buying shares."

To complement the show, which the artist describes as a "fantasy greenhouse," Xenz will be painting onto the exterior building of La Galeria Elefante – one of the oldest fincas [country houses] in Ibiza. Using the island’s springtime flora and fauna as inspiration, Xenz, who has painted walls – and even church ceilings – across the globe since the early ‘90s, will be working his art into the existing natural landscape in the trompe-l’oeil style giving visitors to the show the chance to see the artwork growing over the facade of this beautiful building.

The artist says: "I see my artwork like an organism; like ivy or an orchid that mutates and grows in unusual places. This is the graffiti in it; the wild, unstoppable, destructive element, but it is also beautiful. I like to make things look like they've always been there.”

Xenz has been shown in exhibitions and art fairs in the UK, Miami, New York, Basel and Sydney. He has had sell-out London solo shows, and his limited edition prints are in huge demand. He was part of the prestigious Tunnel 228 (a collaboration between the Old Vic and one of the UK’s most innovative performance companies, Punchdrunk) alongside Antony Micallef, Polly Morgan and Paul Fryer. His work is in private and corporate collections worldwide. He studied at Edinburgh College of Art.

XENZ painted his first piece in 1987 at the age of 14. He grew up in the north of England, which gave a lot of space to experiment with graffiti styles due to its isolation from mainstream popular culture. In 1993, he formed what has become one of the UK’s longest standing and most respected graffiti crews known as the TCF crew. Xenz has developed a unique approach to the art form, and the word graffiti no longer sufficiently describes his work. His extraordinary cohesion between mind, memory and spray can, allows this influential artist to walk up to a wall or canvas and paint an epic landscape from his imagination. His murals are fantasy dreamscapes and he is known for painting dramatic skyscapes and floating cities in a destructed architectural style. He successfully marries fine art with gritty urban art forms, using the spray can to capture fragments of memory and ever-changing subject matter, often drawn from the natural world.

Private View: Saturday, August 21, 2010, 19:00 – 23:00
Public View: August 22-September 19, 2010
Gallery Opening Hours: Monday-Sunday 11:00-21:00

La Hora Azul Gallery
La Galeria Elefante
Santa Gertrudis
Carretera Sant Miquel
 KM 3,200,
07814 Santa Eularia Des Riu
Ibiza, Spain