Inspirations et références
Boulimique de travail, BABS n’a de cesse de rechercher de nouvelles inspirations, tant au niveau de son travail sur toile en atelier que dans le graffiti, sa discipline de prédilection. À l’image de son mentor Dem 189, il casse les codes du lettrage conventionnel, déstructure les lettres en y intégrant des formes inspirées des comics et autres mangas. Il suit son instinct, guidé par la liberté du geste, mais reste plus structuré que le freestyle.
Moebius, Katsuhiro Otomo, Giger, Philippe Druillet… Ces maîtres hantent et composent l’imaginaire de l’artiste, qui, instinctivement, y fait référence dans ses œuvres.
Parfois graphique, organique ou mécanique, l’univers dont il s’inspire ne connaît pas de limite. On y retrouve notamment sa passion pour l’architecture, qu’elle soit gothique ou contemporaine, futuriste ou inspirée de temples anciens. Ses nombreux voyages lui ouvrent les portes d’une inspiration infinie. D’ailleurs, BABS se plaît à qualifier son œuvre de « graffiti abstrait », partie intégrante d’un courant qu’il nomme « néo-graffiti ». Seule l’abstraction pouvait canaliser toute l’énergie de l’artiste : lorsqu’il peint sur toile, il se laisse guider par la peinture qui prend vie sous ses bombes, ses pinceaux, ses mains, ses doigts. L’esthétique volontairement imparfaite de ses œuvres retranscrit cette énergie créatrice, cette force qu’il essaie de maîtriser. Éternel insatisfait, il craint plus que tout l’ennui et la perte de liberté et est en recherche perpétuelle pour faire évoluer sa peinture.
Un artiste pluridisciplinaire
Aujourd’hui BABS est un artiste pluridisciplinaire. Il poursuit son exploration artistique et s’essaie à la sculpture, au modélisme ainsi qu’au tatouage. L’une de ses dernières œuvres, réalisée en 2018 lors du festival Mister Freeze à Toulouse, installation géante de 3 m de diamètre sur 4m de haut, montre une autre facette, plus onirique, mais toujours chargée d’énergie et d’émotions, du travail d’un artiste, constamment en quête de renouveau.
Born in Paris in 1975, in a modest environment, BABS is very young attracted by comics, comics and manga. He was introduced to drawing by reproducing as faithfully as possible his favorite heroes, artistic references most accessible to the lower classes.
It was at the age of 10 that he discovered the first graffiti, initiated by his cousin, barely older than him. From then on, BABS became passionate about this new form of transgressive art, flourishing on the walls of Paris, so much so that when he entered college, his self-taught passion already occupied most of his time. It follows the codes of this new current, permeates its essence and imposes its first signatures on it.
For his 14th birthday, Fnac is giving him copies of Spraycan art and Subway art, which will be a revelation for him and will guide his future. Wanting to pay homage to his peers, followers of the most transgressive form of this current, he painted his first metro in 1992, at the age of 17. Twenty years followed, marked by hundreds of graffiti, on subways, trains, RERs, under twenty pseudonyms.
In 2007, while continuing his work in the shade and anonymity, he wanted to use new media: he therefore tried his hand at canvas. The following year, one of his first works on canvas was presented and sold at Artcurial, during the Art Graffiti / Post Graffiti auction.
In 2009, BABS was invited to participate in the group exhibition Graffiti State of Places at the Galerie du jour Agnès B, in collaboration with Keag and Sor, borrowing for the occasion the name of Graffeur’s Delight. He deals with a “dirty” vandal spirit, deliberately not aesthetically pleasing.
The year 2012 was decisive: he left the underground underground for good to work legally on walls, in the open air. In the months that followed, he participated in the Lasco Project exhibitions, in the bowels of the Palais de Tokyo curated by Hugo Vitrani, as well as in Nomad Utopia at the Carrousel du Louvre in 2013.
2014 will be the year of his first personal exhibition Babstrait, presented by the gallery Le Bon Petit diable (Paris 13th). For the first time, he shows an abstract evolution of his post-graffiti work. He thus revisits the metro map, the genesis of his work, where the colors of the lines intersect to form, not the Ile-de-France network, but a lettering: B.A.B.S.
Collective and personal exhibitions follow one after another, but that does not prevent him from always returning to the essence of graffiti. He creates numerous frescoes abroad: Italy, Spain, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Denmark, Belgium, Germany, Portugal, Switzerland, Brazil, Bali …
Inspirations and references
A workaholic, BABS never stops looking for new inspirations, both in his studio work on canvas and in graffiti, his favorite discipline. Like his mentor Dem 189, he breaks the codes of conventional lettering, deconstructs letters by integrating shapes inspired by comics and other manga. He follows his instinct, guided by the freedom of movement, but remains more structured than freestyle.
Moebius, Katsuhiro Otomo, Giger, Philippe Druillet… These masters haunt and compose the imagination of the artist, who instinctively refers to them in his works.
Sometimes graphic, organic or mechanical, the universe from which he is inspired knows no bounds. In particular, we find his passion for architecture, whether Gothic or contemporary, futuristic or inspired by ancient temples. His many travels open the doors of infinite inspiration to him. In fact, BABS likes to call his work « abstract graffiti », part of a movement he calls « neo-graffiti ». Only abstraction could channel all the artist’s energy: when he paints on canvas, he lets himself be guided by the paint that comes to life under his bombs, his brushes, his hands, his fingers. The deliberately imperfect aesthetic of his works transcribes this creative energy, this force that he tries to control. Eternal dissatisfied, he fears more than anything boredom and the loss of freedom and is in constant search to develop his painting.
A multidisciplinary artist
Today BABS is a multidisciplinary artist. He continued his artistic exploration and tried his hand at sculpture, model making and tattooing. One of his latest works, produced in 2018 during the Mister Freeze festival in Toulouse, a giant installation 3 m in diameter and 4 m high, shows another facet, more dreamlike, but still charged with energy and emotions, the work of an artist, constantly in search of renewal.