In 1989, critics were quick to lambast the pyramid underwhich I. M. Pei camouflaged the entrance to the Louvre museum. Of course, over the course of the ensuing decades it, and its smaller aftershocks dotted around the courtyard, came to be as iconic as the Louvre itself. And the story of its controversial birth became another anecdote in the ongoing battle between those who seek modernity in living cities, and those who would let historic metropoles turn into open air museums.
Naysayers can rejoice, a stroll past the Louvre this Wednesday revealed that the pyramid had quite simply vanished. Part Houdini and part Despicable Me's Vector, flyposting artist JR had quite simply walked off, leaving nothing but a black and white slice where the pyramid had once stood.
Well, sort of. Earlier in the day, he spent hours suspended off a crane, like a spider weaving this new reality, to craft an intricate visual illusion that makes the iconic glass and metal structure simply fade into a black and white depiction of the building behind when you're standing in the right place. Cue a million Instagram pictures of people trying to achieve just the right angle to capture the illusion.
What JR does is enhance the fabric of reality through his photography that blends urban spaces and his unique eye. Keeping to his sunglasses and hat, and his closely guarded identity, the artist brings together the disruptive youthfulness and an eye for sublime, emotional connections between humans and their structures. In short, he brings together the sophistication of Renaissance trompe-l'