Besides that Roeselare (BE) is famous for cyclist Jean-Pierre Monseré, lots of great poets and the burgerbar Open Kitchen (so good!), Roeselare is now also famous for its beautiful mural artworks as part of Day One Festival. Last year the festival took place in Luchtbal, a suburb of Antwerp. I was very impressed by what Street Art Belgium, who organizes the festival, had made possible. Therefore I was excited to go to Roeselare for another edition of Day One.
I was mainly excited to see the mural artwork by Jana & Js, a street art couple who have been painting together for years now. Until Day One I had only ever seen smaller street pieces by them in London and Paris. Mostly these were portraits of one or two people holding a photo camera. It’s almost like they are taking a photo of you looking at them. When I arrived at the spot (sports ground building) in Roeselare huge stencils lay on the ground and they were finishing the artwork. It is an image of a girl sitting on the ground and another girl lying with her head on the other girls lap. Dreamy, romantic and intimate, but most definitely not sporty what you would expect at a sports ground.
Belgian artist Oli-B uses a lot of colour in his art. He worked 3 full days on his wall at Day One Festival. It is an urban jungle with lots of colours and forms. If you stand too close to the artwork, you will only see colours. If you take a distance, you can see a tree, boots, faces and maybe even a rainbow. Just use your imagination like a kid. Another artist from Belgium is Smates, who had the honour of having this enormous factory tower all for himself. His creation is an angry shark that is crashing out of the tower whilst a diver is approaching him. Scary, no? I find it very impressive to see this realistic mural artwork stand out so good in Roeselare.
Zed1’s art is definitely a big acquisition for the town of Roeselare. For over 20 years he is creating beautiful colorful art. His characters can be human, animal or both, or maybe even unknown. Whilst the Roeselare firemen were practicing their extinguishing skills, Zed1 from Italy was painting their firemen tower. It shows a clock with two characters sitting on the hand of the clock, and a big bird quietly sitting underneath it reading a news paper. Something seems to be falling on the big birds head. Is it poo or…? Does it come from the two characters? A mystery to me. Roeselare can be proud to have such a great artwork in town by an amazing talented artist.
Besides the plenty of mural artworks, the festival also hosts a duo exhibition by Isaac Cordal and Jaune. At last year’s Day One, Jaune (BE) was doing an intervention with his tiny characters and street scene. Seeing that he and Isaac Cordal (SE) both create tiny installations, it is no surprise that they have hooked up for a duo exhibition. Atelier 61 was their playground for a whole week, and they turned it into a new land full with trash, dirt, greed and an unsocial society. Exhibitions like this make me very happy. I am fan of the unusual and unexpected. This exhibition had both for sure. If you don’t look up, you might miss an installation. I was actually hoping for an installation on the ceiling, but couldn’t find it. Dear Isaac and Jaune, you guys did a great job!
This is just a small part of the art that was/is part of Day One Festival 2014. In total Roeselare has 13 new mural artworks by not only the artists as highlighted, but also David Walker, Daleast, Denis Meyers, Toy Factory, Pieter Bostoen, Bisser, Alice, and interventions by Bue the Warrior and Dindin. The festival is now officially over, but the art stays. Street Art Belgium is making Belgium beautiful one piece at a time. Which city will be next in 2015? Looking forward to it already!