French urban stencil artist Jean-François Perroy, better known under the pseudonym Jef Aérosol, is a first-generation street artist who began bringing his art to the streets in the early 1980s. He is considered a pioneer of what is now called “urban art” and he remains a reference and an influence among street artists of the younger generations.
Northeastern commissioned him to install a large-scale stencil on the Huntington Avenue side of Cargill Hall, as well as some of his signature stencils around campus.
Aérosol spray-painted his very first stencil in Tours (Central France) in 1982–a self portrait enlarged from a picture taken at a photo booth. He often paints celebrities and cultural icons such as Elvis Presley, Gandhi, John Lennon, Jimmi Hendrix, Basquiat, Amalia Rodrigues, Bob Dylan, among many others.
But a very important part of his work is also devoted to the anonymous characters of the street: buskers, passers-by, beggars, kids, the elderly, and ordinary people.
Aérosol has left his mark on the walls of numerous cities around the world. Within France, his work can be found in Paris Lille, Lyon, Nantes, île de Ré, Orléans, and Tours. You’ll also find his art on the streets of London, Lisbon, Barcelona, Athens, Venice, Rome, Amsterdam, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Brussels, Zurich, Beijing, Tokyo, Palermo, Dublin, Belfast, Ljubljana … and now Boston. He even pasted-up his famous “Sittin’ Kid” stencil on the Great Wall of China.
His mural entitled “Chuuuttt !!!” (Hush !) in the heart of Paris, near the Pompidou museum, is his largest stencil to date (about 350 square meters).
Aérosol’s works can be seen in many exhibitions, group and solo shows, festivals, art fairs, auction sales, and international events. He is represented by several galleries in France and abroad.