French Street Artist JR Takes Over US-Mexico Border With Latest Installations

French Street Artist JR Takes Over US-Mexico Border With Latest Installations

Oct 22, 2017

Born in France in 1983, street artist JR, whose identity remains anonymous, owns the biggest art gallery in the world. He exhibits freely in the streets of the world and has always allowed the public to assist with his street artwork.

JR is known for constantly telling the stories of those that are invisible to the world. His work talks about commitment, freedom, identity and limit.

JR covered rooftops in Kibera, Kenya, with blown-up photographs of the women who lived there. It was part of his Women Are Heroes, project (Photo credit

As a teenager, the street artist started out as a graffiti artist but began taking photographs when he found a camera on the Paris Métro one day. From then on, creating pervasive art in various public locations by pasting oversize black and white photographic canvases, he styled himself a "photograffeur", mixing the two forms together.

JR's most recent installations are centred around the US-Mexican border.

Focusing on immigration and refugees, the artist unveiled his latest project, a 70 foot piece portraying a 'Giant Baby' which will remain in Tecate for a month. JR hopes people will view it from each side.

The street artist had commented saying he was spurred by a dream in which he imagined a child looking over the border wall.

"And when I woke up, I wondered: ’What was he thinking?’. Like for us we know the implication, what it represents, how it divides, but for a kid, I didn’t have the answer." (JR)

'The artwork went up just as Trump announced he was rescinding the Obama administration’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) plan, which protects undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children from deportation'. (TIME Magazine)

Work in progress on the Mexican side of the US/MEXICO border

A post shared by JR (@jr) on Sep 6, 2017 at 1:33pm PDT

JR - Giant Baby Kikito

The Artist pictured with his latest installation on the US-Mexico Border in Tecate with Kikito himself (Photo Credit Art Net)

Following on shortly after, JR's next installation featured a 'Giant Picnic' at the US-Mexico Border fence. Building a massive dining table across both sides of the border, the street artist painted ''the eyes of the dreamer'' on top of the bench.

JR - Giant Picnic

"The Giant Picnic event coincided with the White House issuing a long list of hard-line immigration demands in exchange for a deal to keep the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which would allow the 800,000 “Dreamers” to remain in the country. Among the measures delineated by Trump are a widely panned campaign proposal to construct a wall between the U.S. and Mexico, a pledge to restrict federal funding for “sanctuary cities” and a tightening of the green-card system that would limit lawful permanent residents" (TIME Magazine)

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The Clichy Montfermeil Chronicles

"The film follows the creation of a monumental mural inspired by the work of Diego Rivera, who paints a singular portrait of the neighborhood’s inhabitants. It reveals an image composed of the different generations of people who saw the urban utopia of this territory decay into being the epicenter of the riots which took place in 2005 in France." (Blackpills)

Check out our catalogue of available JR works we have at Hang-Up Gallery here

JR - Hold Up

JR - Action in Kessenuma, Japan

If you have any questions on this weeks blog or want to get in touch regarding our JR prints, please feel free to contact us on

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