Although the development of urban and street art throughout the world differed depending on the context, it was always affiliated with the groups of young people full of desire to express themselves creatively and to change their social setting. As time passed by and as the very movement grew, it spread to other media from sticker art, stencil graffiti, street installations and even sculpture.
Perhaps one of the best examples of hard work and ongoing progress in the terms of urban and street art is the Brazilian artist duo OSGEMEOS. During three-decades-long career, they have managed to establish a unique aesthetic which enabled them to release a large number of works have been presented through various projects in both public and gallery spaces in Asia, Europe, and North America.
At Lehmann Maupin gallery, they've decided to showcase their new body of work titled Déjà Vu, for the first time in their Hong Kong franchise.
The São Paulo-based brothers Gustavo and Otavio Pandolfo started working in the late ‘80s under the name OSGEMEOS, a Portuguese word meaning the twins. The influence of the American pop culture, especially hip-hop, and break-dance was crucial, as well as their working-class neighborhood.
Aside from the creative urge, there was a certain social agenda behind their work in the means of producing art accessible to every individual regardless of the class.
Having that in mind, it so no wonder that later on the brothers started adopting motifs from the Brazilian cultural heritage, which finally led them to establish authentic, yet simple figurative style. As a matter of fact, OSGEMEOS were the driving force behind the local scene and have done much in shaping the country’s specific style.
Although it seems as if the narrative nature of their works centered around the recognizable yellow characters is once again in the focus, with this exhibition OSGEMEOS are moving forward by practically creating an in situ intervention consisting of paintings and a sound installation. The very title Déjà Vu is an ambivalent commentary on their early beginnings, so the exhibition could be perceived as some form of homage to the late 70’s and early 80’s.
While the paintings thematize everyday leisure on the NYC streets in the seventh decade, certain allegorical motifs so typical for OSGEMEOS’s work, the sound installation titled White Carnival depicts the brothers in a formation similar to a choir.
By questioning their own multimedia work in regards to the cannons of street art, as well as the forces behind their creativity and imagination, OSGEMEOS attempt to reexamine and reevaluate their artistic practice in other of achieving constant reinvention.
For the first time, OSGEMEOS will be present their work in Hong Kong. The upcoming exhibition Déjà vu will be on view in Lehmann Maupin gallery where the opening reception with the artist will take place Monday, March 26, from 6 to 8 PM at the Pedder Building.
The public will have an opportunity to see the works of this famous brotherly duo until May 12, 2018.
Feature image: OSGEMEOS - White Carnival, 2016. Media player, USB drive, bluetooth, amplifier, and mixed media on wood, sound 38 parts, dimensions variable, 104.5 x 104.75 x 11.5 inches 265.4 x 266.1 x 29.2 cm. Photo: Max Yawney. Courtesy the artists and Lehmann Maupin, New York and Hong Kong.