The illustrator duo 10eme Arte is 33m long and 90m2 in rue Royale, in Brussels. The black and white fresco is part of the Picture Festival. Meeting and final touch-ups.
You could not miss it if you are used to the rue Royale: visible from the windows of the royal palace as from tram 92, a new fresco appeared on the wall of the Bozar. In this black and white 33m long and 90m2, a young woman reads peacefully as if she were resting in the greenery of the Brussels park, on the other side of the street. The frame is framed by everyday objects and foliage, green apartment plants transplanted into public space.
Baptized “On the Grass”, the fresco is the work of the duo 10eme Arte, formed by the Spanish Almudena Pano and the Italian Elisa Sartori. The two Brussels women are already the authors of an achievement under the Van der Weyden bridge at the bottom of the Marolles or of a wilderness of a public toilet cubicle in Bockstael, both of which are included in the Street-Art Route of the City of Brussels. With one voice, the illustrators reveal to us what is hidden behind this immense fence, made as part of the 2nd Picture Festival. The Brussels event dedicated to illustration in all its forms will be held until June 20.
Associations of ideas
“This fresco consists first of visual games, which make you jump from one image to another like reading a comic book. The place is favorable: the passage induces a reading from left to right. Also, the gaze passes from one object to the next, either by formal proximity, or by association of ideas. For example, the rattle becomes a decanter or a spotted t-shirt turns into a green plant. But from a nest box, you can also go to the cuckoo, then to the watch. Who is without a needle to symbolize a moment of reverie, out of time. Finally, there is the interplay between inside and outside ”.
A non-sexualized woman
«Many passers-by think the character is a boy. Yet she is a young woman. This is due to the fact that she is “sporty” and not at all sexualized, which is rare. This beauty androgyne We are very interested in it: it instills a little doubt, which works well here. The model is a professional dancer, photographed and reworked. The advantage of collaborating with her is that her breaks are always very conscious of her movements ”.
Black and white
“We could have used the colors but black and white interested us for several reasons. First of all, it is well suited for the Picture Festival: it allows to highlight the fact that the illustration is not intended for children only. And then, we show that the colors are in the head: the baby is a soft color, the olives are green, the banana is yellow … Finally, black and white is universal and it refers well to the BD ”.
Street art pays better than publishing
Almudena Pano and Elisa Sartori met at the Academy of Fine Arts in Brussels, in the illustration course. Both maintain personal projects in publishing and it is “to reach a wider audience” while breaking with “the loneliness of the profession of illustrator” that they found themselves in the street-art project 10eme Arte.
“Working on projects of such magnitude, which are displayed in the city, it always does something”, they confide. “Pedestrians stop, ask questions. A fresco democratizes art. And then, above, we work as a team ”.
“Illustration doesn’t pay off well”
The girls make no secret of it: there is also a pecuniary interest in the process. “Illustration doesn’t pay off well. Especially in the children’s book. Streetart pays better: a painting is more expensive than a book ”. However, customers must constantly be reminded of the realities of the profession. “We are sometimes asked if we can make a wall in a house for 400 €. But at this price, we hardly pay for the equipment. People are not aware of the upstream thinking, of the setting up of the site… ”
The City of Brussels, for its part, seems to be a happy customer. “We are starting a street-art fresco next week by the canal, in Neder-Over-Heembeek: it is for the anniversary of the integration of the entities of Laeken, Haren and Neder”. What to drink with one of the sponsors of the duo, a well-known brewer in Brussels who puts butter in the paint cans of 10eme Arte.
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