Globetrotting street artist JR brought his international “Inside Out” public portrait project back home this month when his new installation covering Paris historical Pantheon opened to the public on June 4th.
For the “Au Panthéon!” project, thousands of faces were collected throughout March by the Inside Out PhotoBooth truck at nine French national monuments that were then adhered to the inner & outer surfaces of the building to transform it into a tribute to the people of Paris. The installation will remain on display until October 5th.
The Inside Out project was originally proposed by JR in his speech during the TED conference in 2011, a proposal which eventually won him the prestigious TED Prize together with a grant to help him realise his dream. Since then, over 200,000 portraits of people from around the world have been pasted in public spaces as a way to promote ideas and awareness about social and political issues, or as the organisers state on the project’s website, as a way to ‘‘transform messages of personal identity into works of public art.’’
Today, the Inside Out project functions as a worldwide platform for social change, with a website that helps people either participate in an existing campaign, or launch a new action in their own community.
JR is a contemporary photographer and street artist who has presented his work in public spaces around the world, from the dividing wall in Palestine to the favelas of South America. He recently also collaborated with the New York City Ballet as a choreographer and visual artist for a new dance performance and art installation at the Lincoln Centre.