The reputed visual artist VHILS will leave his mark on Bucharest, Cluj, and Timisoara this autumn
The National Arts University in Bucharest, Fabrica de Pensule in Cluj, and Banatul Philharmonic in Timisoara will be transformed this autumn through the impressive vision of Portuguese artist VHILS (Alexandre Farto), at DU-NE’s initiative. Arriving in Romania for the first time at the end of October, the artist will create 3 murals by the 7th of November, all expressing the aesthetics of vandalism, as the artist calls it. VHILS is known for his particular technique – interventions on walls by partial etching, notching, carving, and even controlled explosions – that is considered one of the most innovative artistic approaches in urban art in the last decades.
A graduate of the prestigious Central St Martins College of Art and Design in London, represented by the same London gallery that features Banksy, with an impressive portfolio that contains solo and group exhibitions, site-specific interventions, projects and events in 28 countries so far, as well as collaborations with international artists such as U2, for which he directed a video in 2014, VHILS is indubitably one of the best regarded contemporary visual artists in the world.
Inspired by the way city walls absorb the social and historical changes that take place around them VHILS discovers – literally and figuratively – layers of history and urban poetry through his art, his works resembling a form of modern archeology.
With the idea of mutual influence between the city and its inhabitants as a starting point, in the sense that “people carve the city they live in, and in turn the city defines the people that inhabit it” VHILS creates works that speak of identity, the ephemeral nature of things in general, and the interdependence between man and space in the context of contemporary urban communities, oversaturated environments where globalization gradually imposes a single reality in which the uniqueness of every culture slowly fades away.
As an enthusiastic experimentalist, VHILS developed the concept of aesthetics of vandalism in a variety of other media he expores in addition to mural projects – 3D modeling, installation, video-art, stencils, sculpting, etching, etc. One of the artist’s recent accomplishments is the placing of a site-specific work in space, in the observation Cupola of the International Space Station.