Wen2, Images of Brest.
Wen2 is the signature and pseudonym of Brest-born artist Gwendal Huet. An important member of the Street Art scene, Wen2 paints fragments of Brest playing with his imagination of the buried city. Under the pavements and buildings of rebuilt Brest lies the debris of the city destroyed by the bombs.
Wen2 makes these urban pieces fly in the middle of an empty space, with the subterranean parts made visible. He does not attempt to reconstruct them in their exact form, but rather to create a dreamlike, even fantastical atmosphere. Thanks to Wen2’s imagination, ordinary underground infrastructures take on strange appearances: under the Vauban Hotel, the water pipes look like cannons.
Wen2’s images also find their way onto the city’s walls. His unique style is well developed and easily recognisable. He plays mischievously with the theme of urban memory. Thus, on the gable of a building in the Quatre Moulins (Four windmills) district, he resurrects the windmills that gave the area its name. However, he does not turn his back on the present-day city or its modern facilities, as demonstrated by one of his paintings which shows a tram crossing Recouvrance bridge.
Through these images, a dizzying temporal spiral emerges that contradicts the linear history of the city and suggests an incessant back and forth movement between dream and reality, which (re)constructs the collective images that remain.
Sonia de Puineuf