We’re big fans of artist Levalet, who papers the streets of Paris with his whimsical, wheatepaste posters. The French street artist has a knack for using the surrounding architecture to give his work a sculptural effect, fused with humor. Each piece creates a vignette that highlights the artist’s strength as a storyteller. This ability has brought him across the globe over the past four years, and he has recently released a book, Des illusions comiques, that brings together his best work.
It’s easy to get lost in the illusion and humor of Levalet’s art, which is a purposeful choice that allows the artist to tackle serious issues with a light touch. “I think humor is one of the most effective ways to talk easily about the most sensitive topics,” he explains to Wide Walls. “It can reduce the unbearable and highlight the absurdity of the most common situations.” The absurdity of social dynamics is a strong undercurrent in his work, which asks us to laugh at ourselves and reflect on our own behaviors.
Levalet is not confined just to site specific work on the street; his new solo exhibition Little Boxes opens today in Berlin at the OPEN Walls Gallery. Running through December 17, 2016, the exhibition is composed of 30 miniature boxes that give Levalet space to create unique scenes. Playing with the confines of the box, much as he plays with urban architecture, he has created vignettes that live inside the gallery as easily as they do on the street. Figures burst from the depths of the box or climb atop them, with sculptural elements added to round out the theatrical scenes.
See more of his street work and pieces from the exhibition below.
All images via Levalet and OPEN Walls Gallery.