If someone ever wants to arrange a solo exhibition of an anonymous street artist acting under the creative pseudonym JR, then he will have to declare the entire planet Earth as a gallery. After all, the works of this creator are inseparable from the cities in which he painted them. They have become their integral part, portraits of the soul of these cities.
JR is primarily a portrait painter. Moreover, he paints portraits of the most ordinary residents of the most ordinary, and even the poorest areas of cities around the world.
So, for example, the walls of the famous favelas (slums) in Rio de Janeiro, the roofs of houses of the poor district in the Kenyan city of Kibera, the security separation wall on the border between Israel and Palestine, the fence of the Refugee Museum in Cartagena, Spain, ruins of houses in Shanghai and innumerable other places in different parts of all inhabited continents of our planet.
Before creating his next work, JR walks the streets of the city, photographs people. And only then, on the basis of one or more of these photographs, he draws his unusual, piercing graffiti. We saw something similar in street drawings by Alexandre Farto, but JR draws his paintings, not scratches them out.
And after all, really, nothing can better show the life of the city, its soul, than a photograph of an ordinary inhabitant of this metropolis, and, especially, his eyes. After all, it is precisely on the eyes that JR makes the main emphasis in his street paintings.
The artist JR recently received the annual TED Prize 2011 for his bright, life-giving work. This is a grant of 100 thousand US dollars, which is given to creative people whose main goal of creativity is to change the world for the better.
Making the world more beautiful and sincere is the main goal of JR. And therefore, the award of the TED Prize 2011 grant to him is quite justified.
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