Many street artists all over the world choose abandoned buildings to show off their masterpieces. Dutch street artist Jan Is De Man has chosen another route; he realizes lively 3D paintings inspired by the local community. His aim is to create projects where everyone can identify themselves.
His recent piece of art includes a whimsical tri-level trompe l’oeil wall mural bookcase on an apartment building in Utrecht, Netherlands. With the help of an other street artist Deef Feed, they have managed to create a masterpiece that you can’t help but admire.
Jan Is De Man says, “I know the people who live on the ground floor very well. They’ve wanted a mural by my hand for a while. They also wanted to let me feel free in my design as long as it would bring something positive to their neighborhood. The first idea was to paint a smiley. A huge smiley. Because I believe people become happier when they see a smiley every day. But this idea didn’t feel complete, and it felt too simple.”
Then he adds, “I studied the shape of the house and the location where this house stands in, and suddenly the idea of making a huge bookcase hit me. I love making 3D art illusions on walls, and I like to see smiles on people’s faces and this idea (I thought meanwhile) could bring all this together.”
The guys wanted to involve the community in this great project of theirs, “We entered the community by asking people for their favorite books, and we were able to put eight languages and cultures together in the same concept. Everybody, every age, every culture, every language was welcome. The only rule I set up to participate in this art project was: no political books and no religious books. Besides that, every book title was welcome.”
“The neighborhood where this work was made is filled with different cultures. And I’ve noticed that this project brought (and hopefully for as long as it lasts) people together without pushing it. They meet each other through books. Regardless of the differences in cultures, regardless of the differences in political point of views. Regardless of being extreme right or extreme left.”