Jean-François Perroy, better known under the pseudonym Jef Aérosol, was born in Nantes (France) on January 15th 1957. He's a French urban stencil artist, a main proponent of the first generation of street artists who started working on the streets in the early 80s.
Jef Aérosol has been living and working in Lille (in the North of France) since 1984 but his works are exhibited worldwide.
He spraypainted his very first stencil in Tours (Central France) in 1982. He was a pioneer of what is now called "urban art" and he remains a reference and an influence among street artists of the younger generations.
Jef often paints celebrities and icons such as Elvis Presley, Gandhi, Lennon, Hendrix, Basquiat, Amalia Rodrigues, Dylan...
But a very important part of his work is also devoted to the anonymous characters of the street : buskers, passers-by, beggars, kids, elderlies, ordinary people...
Jef Aérosol has left his mark on the walls of numerous cities around the world : Paris, Lille, Lyon, Nantes, île de Ré, Orléans, Tours, London, Lisbon, Barcelona, Athens, Venice, Rome, Amsterdam, Chicago, New-York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Brussels, Zurich, Beijing, Tokyo, Palermo, Dublin, Belfast, Ljubljana... He even pasted-up his famous "Sittin'Kid" stencil on the Great Wall of China !
Jef'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.
Jef painted a stencilled mural on the Robert Musil Museum in Klagenfurt (Austria) in November 2010.
He was also invited by the French Embassy in Tokyo and participated in "No Man's Land", a very successful and highly prestigious event, along with many French and Japanese artists such as Speedy Graphito, Christian Boltanski, Claude Lévêque, Georges Rousse and so many more...
Jef Aérosol's famous and somewhat mysterious red arrow appears on all his works and has become some sort of a trademark, or second signature. Jef sometimes gives his own explanations but he prefers the people to come up with their own interpretations and feelings about the arrow !
Jef Aérosol was the organizer of a group show called "Dites 33", a tribute to the covers of those good old vinyl 33rpm albums (he collects them !). The exhibition gathered 100 artists (and about 1000 pieces !) and travelled in France and Belgium between 2005 and 2009.
Jef released a book in 2007 : "VIP Very Important Pochoirs" (Editions Alternatives, Paris) and another one in September 2010 : "Jef Aérosol, risque de rêves" (éditions Critères, collection Opus Délits). In January 2011, the catalogue of his show at the Musée des Avelines (Saint Cloud) was issued, with a foreword by legendary artist Ernest Pignon-Ernest.
Jef was the one who made the cover and gave its title to the very first book ever published about street stencils :Vite Fait, Bien Fait (éditions Alternatives / Agnès B, 1986).
Since then, lots of articles have been written about him and he has been featured in numerous publications (French and foreign) about stencil and street art.
A 26 minute film by Manuela Dalle was shot in 2009 and broadcast on German/French TV channel Arte :"Jef Aérosol : l'Art et la Manière". Jef also participated in "La Copie de Coralie", a film by young French filmmaker Nicolas Engel. Many videos and TV reports have also shown Jef and his works, nationally and internationally.
In May 2010, Jef Aérosol painted a huge mural setting in Brussels for Martin Provost's next movie "Où va la nuit..." featuring Belgian star Yolande Moreau. (Martin's previous film "Séraphine", with Yolande, won 7 Cesars in 2009)
Also a musician, Jef has played, toured and recorded with several bands (Windcatchers, Open Road, Distant Shores...)