Faile – Meet Me Halfway at Magda Danysz Gallery

By on 28th March 2017

Its been a long time since we last saw Faile in a full-on solo show in Europe so ever since learning that Faile were to be staging a Show with Magda Danysz in Paris We have been very excited to see what this show had to offer.

Not only that but Paris is fast becoming the Urban Art capital of Europe and this week alone has seen shows from Faile, Invader, Nick Walker and many others that are also in full-swing or just about to kick-off. 

The entrance to the gallery was completely unassuming and until you spot a familiar image of a little girl laying in the grass that has been stencilled on the front wall you would have no clue of the delights inside…..(well, until you actually look through the door that is).

This show for me, was exactly what Faile are about. Huge over-sized canvases, mash-ups of collaged, montaged pieces, wood blocks, found objects, all of the Faile Iconography. Faile’s Dogs, Wolves, Bunnies……the only imagery I didn’t see were scuba / surfing horses but pretty sure if id looked hard enough i would have found it all.

The works were incredible and i actually got a shiver up my spine being amongst so much Faile loveliness. Presentation was superb and the gallery space was perfectly suited to the work.

Split over 2 levels, upstairs contained works on paper with the exception of one wood-block piece. The paper works were collage representations of some of their old imagery such as Happens Every Day, Bedtime Stories etc. The work had a feel of deconstruction or abstraction but it was only on closer inspection you then realised they were built up of paper layers to give the sense of the abstract, incomplete images. It worked very well and the whole show came together perfectly to give us one of the best Faile shows we’ve seen in Europe for a long time.

The Canvases and other huge works on the ground floor were beautifully made. the collage pieces were sublime and demonstrated the depth and extent of their work. All of the iconography was there to enjoy and the recurring imagery, especially the obvious references to the space shuttle Challenger, 1986, A life, the wolf within…… Just some time studying the works realised so many of the familiar images, characters and those everyday challenges that are so binary in our lives, love & hate, desire & satiation, Survival & Greed.

Maybe we (in Europe) have been too detached from what these guys have been doing but I couldn’t help feeling that over the last 5 years or so that some of that old Faile magic had started to disappear…..after seeing this show, my love for Faile has been re-ignited and now burns stronger than ever.   If I could have asked for anything else then maybe a Faile Sculpture or 2 would have added yet another dimension but I came away from this show truly in awe of the work i had seen. 

This was a superb body of work that has clearly taken a lot of time, hard work and love to produce. The Patrick’s have done an amazing job in bringing this together and the quality and depth of the pieces was incredible. Magda Danysz never fails to disappoint with the quality of artists she is able to bring to her Galleries but this is quite possibly the best show I have seen within her camp so far.


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