Who is Zevs?
Christophe Aguirre Schwarz alias Zevs was born on 17 November 1977 in Saverne, France. He began making graffiti at the age of 12. He tags the streets of his hometown every day on his way to school. At weekends he goes to Paris, where he leaves his tags on the streets, in the metro stops and on the trains. These are considered his traces and thus he creates his own path in Paris. The feeling of being able to express himself and leave his mark is what appeals to him most. So much so that one day, during a spraying action in a train tunnel, he is almost run over by a regional train called Zeus. Hence the choice of his stage name.
Together with André Saraiva and Invaderwith whom he collaborates a lot in the mid-90s, he belongs to the early Parisian graffiti movement. Works and biographies of contemporary artists such as Basquiat serve as a source of inspiration for him and have influenced and left a long-term mark on his artistic expression.
Zevs in the "25 Years" exhibition at MUCA Munich
At the MUCA, the work "Liquidated olympic rings" from the series "Liquidated Logos" was on display in the anniversary exhibition (06.10.2022 - 10.09.2023).
This was created in connection with the 2012 Olympic Games. Zevs hereby points out the problems associated with the sponsorship of sporting events by large companies.
What are "Visual Kidnapping" and "Liquidated Logos" by Zevs?
Among his earliest works are the "Electric Shadows". In these, the artist traces the shadows of everyday objects on the street in daylight, so that these shadows remain visible at night and thus change the perception of the objects in the dark.
His best-known art actions are "Visual Kidnapping" and "Liquidated Logos".
In the "Visual Kidnapping" action, Zevs kidnapped a ten-metre Lavazza advertising poster with a female model on it at Berlin's Alexanderplatz in 2002. The public and the media showed great interest in the "kidnapping", so that the action became famous rather quickly. The artist then contacted the Lavazza Group with a request for a ransom of €500,000. The ransom was paid and was presented as a donation to the Palais de Tokyo Museum in Paris.
In the series "Liquidated Logos", Zevs created an effect of dissolution using downward flowing colour on well-known logos such as Chanel, McDonald's and Louis Vuitton.