mercredi 25 août 2010

Stencilo, ergo sum !

ERGO est un jeune artiste de rue dont les simples mais superbes et efficaces pochoirs peuvent être appréciés ces jours-ci en différents endroits de Bruxelles. Grâce à, nous avons pu entrer en contact avec ERGO - qui travaille pour une ONG - et lui poser quelques questions. Voici une version légèrement éditée de notre agréable conversation en angliche original :

Would you please introduce yourself ?

I am a 30-year old guy born in Bristol (UK) ... Which may or may not explain my love for street art and stencils ! I grew up everywhere though : Japan, Venezuela, Scotland, Ireland, most of East Africa ... I moved to Brussels in January 2010. The influence of all the travelling and all the exposure is pretty evident in my work. I am self-taught and have absolutely no art or design background. I sign ERGO, latin for « therefore », as a way to emphasise that behind every face I paint, behind every stencil I cut, there is a thought process, a rationale that culminates in the work. My stencils are only the end product of a much longer - but much more private - process.

When and why did you decide to express yourself through street art and more specifically through stencils ?

In late 2008 I found myself at a crossroad, both personally and in terms of the environment I was in. I was living in Venezuela at the time and the political and social unrest that has characterised life there in the last decade got to me. I needed to say something. I needed some sort of controlled explosion ... And street art was it ! I chose stencils initially to counterbalance my lack of artistic dexterity. Nowadays, I wouldn’t trade stencilling for anything ... It has become a huge part of who I am, as a person and as an artist. I couldn’t think of working without them !

What are the topics that you seek to develop in your stencils ?

I work almost exclusively with portraits. People often look for a social trend in my work and, sure, I tend to pick profiles that don’t quite match the standard or commercial definition of beauty ... But I don’t think I am out to push a political or social message as such. Which is not to say that my work doesn’t seek to play a social role because I guess all street art does. The idea is that people will look at those giant faces staring at them and they will feel something. I am not particularly concerned with what they feel, as long as they feel something ! But to be honest, I paint for me ... For what it makes me feel.

Bien qu’il se débatte encore un peu avec les us, coutumes et habitudes un peu bizarres de la capitale mondiale de l’Europe, ERGO nous dit aussi qu’il se sent déjà comme à la maison à Bruxelles ... Sa volonté de « laisser sa marque » dans notre ville ne l’empêche cependant pas de travailler en parallèle à d’autres projets à Barcelone, Lisbone et Londres. Son site est à

Copyright : Pochoirs du double portrait « Manage » et de la signature par ERGO (repéré au dos d’une armoire de collecte OXFAM). Interview et photographies par Serge-Louis pour Brigadier Plipp.

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