Blek le Rat is a French graffiti artist. He was one of the first graffiti artists in Paris, and has been described as the “Father of stencil graffiti” He uses stencils and spray paint to create wall paintings, using photographic sources and juxtaposition to convey provocative and politically controversial statements. The artist’s interest in social commentary through graffiti has had a major influence on street artists around the world, including the anonymous Banksy. There is no doubt that street art’s political connotations have been essential to its charm, and Le Rat’s work is no exception. Within his oeuvre, topics such as religion, the economy, the military, and art history are approached with a wit that reflects the quick sensibilities necessary to make art on the streets. Born on November 15, 1951 in Boulogne-Billancourt, France, he studied printmaking and painting at the École national superieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Le Rat lives and works in Paris, France.
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