For the Pop Air exhibition, the artist Rub Kandy presents the Ginjos: characters of different shapes and colors which take up the space, a tribe of mysterious figures that has been just discovered, a tribe of an unknown origin, which may become an event smash thanks to their iconic rubbery nature. The artist tells us about his first meeting with them:
“One day you wake up and find a GINJO in your house.
Ok ok you don’t know it’s called GINJO, but soon you will and you will also know that it is spelled in CAPSLOCK.
It is not clear where they are from or how long they have been here.
I think they are Portuguese, no, maybe Latino, I don’t know, maybe Oriental.
I don’t know. I saw the first one in Lisbon, but maybe it was there by accident.
They don’t have mouths or they just keep their mouths shut. And I think I know why.
I find it hard to understand what they are thinking or how they communicate with each other.
I get the impression that they are careful not to be discovered by me, to show their feelings.
Or maybe they just ignore me.
They’re quiet, but I think it’s actually me who doesn’t hear them.
I was immediately intrigued by them, so I tried to learn all about them.
So: they come in Strawberry Red, Purple, Magenta Pink, Babyblue, Black.
I think they hate yellow.
They come in various sizes, I’ve identified roughly four.
I, for convenience, call them the Baby, the Student, the Big, the Superbig.
I’m not sure that different sizes correspond to different ages.
I don’t think there are boys and girls.
They also love to party.
Sometimes they are in groups but other times they are alone.
They have feelings.
Is hard to tell but I’m sure they do.
I swear I’ve seen some of them blush.
I couldn’t find anything on google about it.
I don’t know if they are good or bad.
Maybe some are good and some are bad?
Who knows how many there are.
it is impossible to count them, they always change in number.
I don’t know how that’s possible.
Sometimes I thought they were a figment of my imagination.
I thought I was the only one who saw them.
Yet someone besides me has seen them.
do you see them?
I swear I saw them.”
Rub Kandy aka Mimmo Rubino, born in 1979, is a Roman artist who for twenty years has been moving between graffiti, contemporary art, urban art and applied art. He has collected multiform and irreconcilable interventions with each other for media, style, technique, context. His research is free from the dictates of recognizability. The language is crossover and mixes fine art, vandalism, and conceptual. The works alternate strict formalism, minimalism, optical, social anger, childish emotionality, megalomania, defeatism. He does not disdain pop culture, design thinking, applied art. He has participated in several international events, including exhibitions, festivals, public art interventions and urban regeneration projects. Among them: Panama Biennial, 2013; Outdoor Festival – Ex Caserma Guido Reni, Rome, 2015; SANBA Festival, San Basilio district, Rome, 2015; Manifesta 11 – The European biennial of contemporary art, Zurich, 2016; Artmossphere – Moscow Biennial of Urban Art, 2016; Paphos 2017 European Capital of Culture (Cyprus); Art Stop Monti, refurbishment of Cavour subway station for ATAC – Rome, 2017; L’Albergo delle Piante, Corviale district, Rome, 2017; Matera 2019 European Capital of Culture. Many independent interventions made between public spaces and suburbs around the world, including Rome, Berlin, Paris, New York. His work has been reported on international newspapers and publications, particularly in the field of urban art and post-graffiti.