JR is coming to London

Migrants, Mayra, Picnic across the border, Tecate, Mexico - USA, 2017

JR (French, born 1983). Migrants, Mayra, Picnic across the border, Tecate, Mexico - USA, 2017. Installation image. Wheat-pasted poster on table © JR-ART.NET


Remember what it felt like to get excited about going to things? Well, Saatchi Gallery is here to get our hearts racing again. This November, the largest solo museum exhibition to date of the internationally recognised French artist JR is opening – when we couldn’t have needed it more.

Make a date in your (probably empty) diaries for 13 November when the TED Prize winner, Oscar-nominated filmmaker and one of Time’s 100 most influential people of 2018 will be celebrated in his first major UK exhibition.

Over the past two decades, JR has expanded the meaning of public art, receiving critical acclaim for collaborating with different communities and creating a dialogue around critical social issues, from women’s rights to immigration, to gun control.

His installations shine a spotlight on communities across the world by taking individual portraits, reproducing them at a monumental scale, and wheat pasting them – sometimes illegally – in nearby public spaces, allowing the individuals portrayed to remain at the centre of the discussions prompted by the artist’s work.

The expanded London presentation of JR: Chronicles follows its success in New York City and will feature some of JR’s most iconic projects from the past 15 years, showcasing photographs, films and documentation of the artist’s installations. Curated by Sharon Matt Atkins and Drew Sawyer from the Brooklyn Museum, it will follow his career from his early documentation of graffiti artists as a teenager in Paris, to his large-scale architectural interventions in cities worldwide, to his recent digitally collaged murals that create collective portraits of diverse publics. Recent additions will include: The Secret of the Great Pyramid (2019), JR’s large-scale collaborative piece created in occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Louvre Pyramid, and Tehachapi (2019) which follows JR’s experiences with inmates of a maximum-security prison in California.

JR: Chronicles takes visitors on a global journey through the intimate storytelling of one of today’s most influential contemporary artists. The exhibition opens in London during a key moment in time in which social engagement and the power of communities have taken centre-stage in London and around the world,” adds Laura Uccello, Partnerships Director at Saatchi Gallery.

JR: Chronicles is organised by the Brooklyn Museum. The exhibition opens at Saatchi Gallery, London on 13 November, with major support by Art Explora. Pre-sale tickets are now on sale.


28 Millim+¿tres - Women Are Heroes, Action in Jaipur, Holi Fest, Inde, 2009

JR (French, born 1983) 28 Millimeters, Women Are Heroes, Action in Jaipur, Holi Fest., India, 2009. Colour lithograph. © JR-ART.NET

28 Millim+¿tres, Women Are Heroes, Exhibition in Paris, Pont Louis-Philippe - Pont Marie side by night, with barge, France, 2010

JR (French, born 1983) 28 Millimetres, Women Are Heroes, Exhibition in Paris, Pont Louis-Philippe-Pont Marie side by night, with barge, France, 2009. Colour lithograph. © JR-ART.NET

The Gun Chronicles - Installation View, 2018

JR (French, born 1983) The Gun Chronicles, 2018. Installation view, La Maison Europeenne de la Photographie. Video, black and white, sound; 4 min. loop. © JR-ART.NET (Photo: Claire Dome, courtesy Perrotin)