Closer to the source
For the graffiti and street artist Markus Genesius (aka WOW123), the television test pattern professionally known as PM554 19 1966/67, has been an inspiration for over 10 years. Designed by Danish engineer Finn Hendil in the 60s, the symbol that could once be seen on television stations all over the world at the end of each day’s programming, has become an anchor point for Genesius’s artistic development. The image of the test pattern that was used for over three decades has become but a memory for most people in today’s fast-paced, non-stop digital world. But for Genesius, the symbol takes him back to his roots.
The opportunity for the German artist to work elevated many stories high in Strijp-S (formally owned by Philips) in the Dutch city of Eindhoven on the VIDEOLAB wall, was too good for Genesius to pass on. The importance of this building was not lost on him. Among other things, the DVD and the BLURAY players were both developed there by the brand Philips, which also was responsible for the creation of the television test pattern itself. The works Genesius has created since focusing on the test pattern symbol have been a long stylistic path. Taking him away from his origins in graffiti style writing and back again, to ultimately concentrating on the colors of the test pattern which created the bridge for him between the street and the fine art/ gallery territory. Throughout the process, regardless of which direction Genesius’s attention went in, the test pattern was always recognizable in some form or another.
How are we going to get down from here?
The BACK TO MY ROOTS project did not happen without any hitches. Although his Montana GOLD and BLACK cans were applied without any interruptions and the support organization’s; Park Strijpbeheer, Montana Cans, Mooi Lost op, Eindhoven 365, Dynamo, Vincent Huibers Graffiti Agency, and From the Zoo Film all came through with results, there was no guarantee that the scissor lift that Genesius and his cameraman were using was going to get them back down to the ground. As is mostly the case, in the end, it all worked out and an incredible artwork was created. The architecture of Eindhoven was given a fresh new face in a dynamic cityscape. Take a look at the BACK TO MY ROOTS film here for a first-hand experience.
Images by LukeDaDuke & fromthezoofilm