May 26, 2013

Alias: Invader. Space Invader!

The great moment came. The moment of invading this website, too. As it is impossible to not come across him in the city, either this blog couldn't stay without a post about him. The French street artist Invader (his website, blog or Wikipedia article), who pastes up his mosaic works around the world, become one of the best well known urban-street-artist. His characters that are inspired by the arcade game Space Invaders, are made up from little mosaic pieces, like the characters are made up from pixels. 

There's a nice and clear FAQ-like interview on his website (although it's from 2008), explaining shortly the general idea of the Invader's actions and activities within the cities. I will paste a few answers here, the most essential to understand his work.

Basically, I guess around 1000 or more little invaders-mosaics are pasted all around Paris already. I noticed that the work of Invader periodically undergoes some metamorphosis. In the beginning of his work - early 90's, they were more simple, "pixelated" and very alike invaders from the games. However, with the time they have started to relate much more to the surrounding. For example picture below shows the mosaic with the paint roller, because the name of the street is "Impasse des peintres". After, another and another, let's say, "species" were produced.

Quote from Invader's website: "How many people are involved? Just me. In the eight years (as the interview is from 2008 - it's been 13 years already) I've been working on this project, I've traveled to 35 cities on all five continents with the sole intention of "invading" them! Having said that, people have sent me photos of Space Invaders in towns I've never set foot in! I see it as a positive thing, a kind of tribute."

Quote from Invader's website: "What's the Space Invaders project about? The idea is to "invade" cities all over the world with characters inspired by first-generation arcade games, and especially the now classic Space Invaders.[...]"

Quote from Invader's website: "What made you choose Space Invaders as the main character for the project? Lots of reasons. I see them as a symbol of our era and the birth of modern technology, with video games, computers, the Internet, mobile phones, hackers and viruses. And "space invader" is a pretty good definition of what I'm doing... invading spaces!"

Mosaic below looks like a "very special edition". Nothing strange if we know that it's pasted/cemented up in the Rue de Candie street, so one of the most popular, strategic and artistic-busy spot in Paris.

The one below (as many other as well of course), we can observe in it's natural environment in Google Maps Street View:

Quote from Wikipedia: "The locations for the mosaics are not random, but are chosen according to diverse criteria, which may be aesthetic, strategic or conceptual. Invader favours locations that are frequented by many people, but also likes some more hidden locations. In Montpellier, the locations of mosaics were chosen so that, when placed on a map, they form an image of a giant space invader character."

One of the newest and biggest. Still shiny...

One of the cutest series of Invader is about the characters from movies, stories, cartoons and other (than Space Invaders) games. We can "meet" on the walls, among the others: Mario Bros, Pink Panther or Totoro, as presented below.

Totoro character
 Enjoy meeting Space Invader in your own cities, too!

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