on crack art in antibes
Someone in Antibes, France is messing with the cracks in the walls in Vieil Antibes. The walls have chipped paint and some small areas are crumbling and in other sections plaster has fallen away. Someone is turning these into works of art. I think that I know who is creating them.
Some years ago, while wandering through the streets and alleys of old Antibes, I saw small figurine sculptures embedded into the stone walls. It looked like someone had molded putty into figures on the plaster between the stones.
The sculpturing material is strong and permanent; the pieces cannot be removed from the walls without hammer and chisel.
Recently, a new kind of image has appeared on the walls in Vieil Antibes. An artist is showing new ways to look at the crumbling facades and chipped paint and plaster.
The artist looked at the patches on the walls and imagined an image; and with a few deft lines, accentuated with chalk or black paint, and with some smudges here and there, a image appeared. (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)
The areas with the images are not always flat. Small contours give the wall a three dimensional quality to that area. The artist has used those bumps and depressions to create the trompe l’oeil style works.
In a way, the images remind me of the comment attributed to Michelangelo, “The sculpture is already complete within the marble block, before I start my work. It is already there, I just have to chisel away the superfluous material.” (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)
In these works, the artist has observed possibilities in the ruins and weathered facades and created new images, works of art out of aging buildings.
I believe the artist is Ho Lui, an artist and sculptor with a storefront on avenue James Close in Antibes. He created the small sculptures that are embedded in the walls around old Antibes. (Click on any photo to see it larger and in more detail. Cliquez sur une vignette pour l’agrandir.)
12 April 2022: As the days pass and I continue to walk through the allées and the ruelles of Antibes, I find more crack art.