HOW & NOSM 'IN BETWEEN'
HOW & NOSM, IN BETWEEN
APRIL 23 — JUNE 12, 2016
April 11, 2013 (Detroit)
Detroit-based contemporary and fine art gallery, Library Street Collective, is pleased to announce In Between, a solo exhibition by Brooklyn-based artists How & Nosm. Often referencing themes of dichotomy and duality, twin brothers Raoul (How) and Davide (Nosm) Perre will examine the struggle for balance in this exhibition of intricate works on canvas and paper, taking their exploration of opposites to places of mediation.
Born in Spain and raised in Germany, the twins first encountered graffiti as teenagers and developed their early style by tagging buildings and trains throughout Europe. Eventually, the craft and transient lifestyle brought them to New York, where they became members of the legendary TATS CRU, a group of professional muralists and an authority in graffiti culture. How & Nosm have since become masters with an aerosol can, and are known for the seamless way in which they collaborate, finishing one another’s sentences and line work as if operating as a single entity. “Feelings of conflict and struggle are common when it comes to the concept for our paintings. If they evoke that in the viewer, then we have reached the conversation that we were hoping for,” says Davide. Their trademark palette of red, black, and white belies the seriousness of this concept from a distance, but up close, complex characters wind together in an unending spiral of contention. Many pieces present worlds within worlds, stacked and winding together, which the brothers say is illustrative of the weight of forces that impact us individually and within a society.
Their process seems to build from dominant forms to increasingly small details, with broad arcs of skillful line work dictating the design of more intricate parts. Despite this formal hierarchy, all elements remain significant; whether character, symbol, or geometric construct, all pieces “coexist to create balance.” It is this convergence of disparate elements that creates tension and inspires curiosity. In addition to 12 paintings on canvas, In Between will include for the first time more than 30 pencil drawings, which the artists created as process for their many murals and paintings. This collection of works on paper is divided into two categories, ‘Born’ and ‘Unborn’, referencing whether the drawing was used to fulfill the larger projects (‘Born’) or remained unrealized (‘Unborn’).
Coinciding with the exhibition, Library Street Collective has partnered with Bedrock Detroit and Meridian Health to present a mural by How & Nosm at One Campus Martius, their tallest mural to date, which will inhabit the space next to the world-renowned work by Shepard Fairey completed in May 2015. The 184’ by 60’ mural, titled Balancing Act, references a traditional family tree and considers it on a societal scale, taking the form of a totem pole. Balanced on one foot and dangerously close to collapse, the precariousness of the totem signifies the delicate nature of family and community, reminding us to strive for harmony as individuals and parts of the whole.
HOW & NOSM
How and Nosm (Raoul and Davide Perre) are identical twin brothers known for their large scale graffiti based murals that adorn city walls around the world. The red, black, and white-based imagery is instantly recognizable and commands attention through the impressive size and the intricate detail. Initially the color palette was limited for practicality but instead has become a distinct calling card and formal choice that has allowed these artists to push spray paint to a new level. Commissioned and facilitated, they have become sought after artists, an ironic progression, where the outsiders have become insiders and are currently redefining what constitutes graffiti and public art. How and Nosm have completed murals and exhibited globally, including a project with Pace Prints Gallery (NY) titled ‘Way Things Are’, which brought them to Hong Kong, Art Basel Switzerland, and Expo Chicago in 2015.