15 rue des Arquebusiers, 75003 Paris
October 21 – December 23, 2017

Speedy Graphito’s new series A World of Dreams will be shown at Polaris in Paris, from October 21 to December 23. This will be his 14th solo exhibition with the gallery.
If, as Sigmund Freud thinks, dreams are « the royal road to a knowledge of the unconscious », they are deciphered like a rebus in which each element conceals an idea that only the dreamer can interpret. The dream and its interpretation form an extraordinary reservoir of images which Speedy Graphito uses for this very rich new series. As usual, his paintings come with titles that emphasize their strangeness along with the artists’ humour which may sometimes be cutting.

Since his first exhibition at Polaris, in 1985, Speedy Graphito has built a protean work. In A World of Dreams, he exploits a new language. He admires Magritte, Lichtenstein, Warhol… and, like them he likes to experiment new techniques such as superposition, inclusion, transformation, metamorphosis. Speedy Graphito’s work is not only a clever assimilation of his « fathers », we also discover a vernacular style specific to his way of revisiting art history and questioning the various representation modes in painting, sculpture, drawing by intertwining time and culture.

In this way, his latest works based on dreams dissect the history of painting and mix up techniques, styles, motifs, figures, periods. His subject is not art history but the representation of art history in art.

At early stages, Speedy Graphito liked to quote masterpieces. For his 1990 solo exhibition at Polaris, Speedy Graphito paints modern art from 1990 to the current days he already quoted Signac, Basquiat, Picasso….
We can say that his work is partly collective, through his borrowings from art history, and partly social since he has relentlessly transcribed his own concerns regarding the links between art and money, art and society, art and art, etc.

Bold, protean creator, Speedy Graphito embodies the spirituality of Street Art. With insatiable artistic interest and extremely fertile creative impetus, he has always been interested in any form of art: painting, fresco, stencil, sculpture, drawing, engraving, silkscreen printing, books, etc. This diversity of techniques is not about achieving prowesses but more about highlighting his incredible ability of imagination. Speedy Graphito likes to master all traditional genres in order to better digest them and surpass them. For his last exhibition at galerie Castanier in Miami in 2016 he achieved his first one man show entirely dedicated to American art, giving a new impetus to his painting.

By «abstractisizing» these iconic images and taking them into worlds unknown to them, Speedy Graphito offers us a kind of third dimension of art history. He succeeds in creating a rich and poetic universe by referring to his famous «fathers»: Okusai, Dali, Miro, Magritte, Indiana, Lichtenstein, Warhol, Hockney… For the viewer, these works are a playful challenge, a kind of treasure hunt,intertwined in one another, with a contemporary approach. In Aquatic Dream we recognize Lichtenstein’s central female character but she is surrounded by other references, especially figures derived from comics who seem surprised to find themselves in a colourful, labyrinth like, pop surrounding.

The picture reminds us of the final scene of Orson Wells’ The Lady from Shanghai when Rita Hayworth,surrounded by mirrors, is unable to aim at the real character. The tears of the woman remind us of the foam of Okusai’s wave.

The new pictures take us on a journey into the world of dreams. Speedy Graphito brings back iconic works to our consciences, in a completely new vision from that of our mental or retinal memories.

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