ELLIS awakens our collective memory, taking you back to the early years of Ellis Island through the experience of one immigrant. Set in the abandoned Ellis Island Hospital complex and using JR’s UNFRAMED art installations, ELLIS tells the forgotten story of the immigrants who built America. It is the story of the ghosts of our countries past, the individuals who fled poverty, discrimination, and dictatorships, for a chance at a new life and eerily foreshadows the plight of those who currently seek the same opportunities and safety in this country and other parts of the world. The short narrative film stars Academy Award® Winner Robert De Niro, is written by Academy Award® winner Eric Roth, and is directed by the artist JR.
JR exhibits freely in the streets of the world, catching the attention of people who are not typical museum visitors. In 2011 he received the TED Prize, after which he created Inside Out, an international participatory art project that allows people worldwide to get their picture taken and paste it to support an idea and share their experience. His most recent installations include a collaboration with New York City Ballet, a huge installation on the Panthéon in Paris and the pasting of a container ship. He recently directed the short documentary Les Bosquets, based on the story of Ladj Ly and the performance of the ballet Les Bosquets of New York City Ballet (2014) inspired by the riots in the French suburbs in 2005. JR also directed Face to Face, Women are Heroes, and Wrinkles of the City – Cuba.
ELLIS – JR ARTIST