Since 2016, when Omar introduced me to the FlashInvaders app, I have been happily racking up sightings of works by the street artist Invader in Paris, Tokyo and New York. By the end of my 2018 trip, with considerable help from Brian and Sheila Boyle, I had 51 sightings, out of 1,285 total in Paris.
I thought I had “only” 1,234 to go, but imagine my bemusement when I opened the app this year and found that Invader had added more than 100 works, totalling 1,401: I was falling behind!
Fortunately, C.N., Sherard and Jared all got into the game and helped me add another 90 images — despite three weeks without a cell phone — bringing my Paris haul to a respectable 141, just shy of 10% of the total.
The newer works are quite varied. Some are big and bold, taking advantage of the fact that Invader is now the toast of Paris rather than someone who has to sneak around in the dark of night to put up guerrilla artworks.
Here are a couple more really big ones.
Some are rather cleverly camouflaged.
Others spell out words.
Some of the new ones are rather mysterious.
Others are just plain witty and fun.
Picard is a frozen food store, so this one is particularly apropos.
One I hadn’t seen before was right outside the window of my 2019 apartment on rue Montorgueil!
There’s only one type of the new artworks that I don’t much like. These are large composite images that spell out a sentence, somewhat like a rebus. I don’t find them artful enough.
Sherard pointed out that Invader has an Instagram account on which he posts tantalizing images of newly-added works. It’s fun.
I see from Invader’s web site that he has put up 3,776 images in 78 cities, but only in New York and Miami on the East Coast. Keep your eyes peeled when you go on vacation, however, since he’s been all around the world.
There are a surprising number of faux Invaders in Paris. Some are obviously fake but others look real to my rather experienced eye. Here, just for fun, is a rogue’s gallery of fake Invaders: