In 2016, French artist JR – who is renowned for creating large-scale artworks that pop up seemingly overnight in cities across the world – was chosen as one of three artists-in-residence for the Rio Olympics.
He responded with typical grandeur, creating a series of three monumental installations that were installed across the city. The artworks featured epic photographs of three athletes – French triathlete Léonie Periault, Mohamed Younes Idriss, a Sudanese high jumper and Brazilian diver Cleuson Lima Do Rosario. None were Olympic athletes, yet, but rising stars who had missed the games for various reasons.
For a new exhibition at Lazinc (formerly Lazarides Gallery, now in a new space in Mayfair, London), JR is displaying a series of artworks created in response to the installations in Rio, including a number of artworks that reveal, to an extent, his working practice.