Words by Sandy Aziz.
Always versus never – a dichotomy not usually coupled with the transient word: change. Yet, artists Wu Yué and CHITO collaborated on their London debut exhibition and titled it Always Change, Never Change. “The title came from how I operate creatively,” explains Wu Yué, “always change means don’t be scared to move forward and grow while never change reminds us to remember our roots and to stay true to them in our progression.” As far as the title goes, CHITO says, “as soon as I heard it, I knew it was good!”
There is a further dichotomy in that Wu Yué and CHITO have two different styles - Wu Yué explains his style as one of “freedom in figuration”, while CHITO defines his style as “scale and simplicity.” Despite these differences, they came together to create this collaboration.
As an Asian-born artist now based in Paris, Wu Yué came from an artistic lineage with his grandfather and father both being painters. “I am a figurative painter and I was taught how to draw formally - so I wasn’t as free as CHITO. However, I am trying to find freedom in my techniques,” says Wu Yué. He does revisit subjects from childhood, but he also uses irreversible techniques so some of the art is left up to chance on the spot while he is creating. For this exhibition, Wu Yué etched on a white BMW E30 with a dremel. “It took me about a week just to create the art on the car because I was etching with a dremel and using bleach - all irreversible techniques. So, the subjects really came while I was producing the work.”
Mexican-American artist CHITO initially started creating via spray paint – tagging street walls and then took his graffiti indoors to studios. He began to tag high-end luggage and even worked with Givenchy in 2022. CHITO says his style is “cute but rough around the edges.” He also likes to keep it simple. “I make characters I see and encounter in the world and then I translate them into my work,” explains CHITO.
A perfect matrimony of high fashion and contemporary art - the exhibit is both the artist's London debut and their first time to create work collaboratively. The show launched on the 7th of July and runs until the 6th of August at OMNI Gallery, 56 Eastcastle Street, London W1W 8EG.