Born in Paris, in the late 80’s, Steph Cop was a part of the first French graffiti movement, an group called “Control of Paris”. Renowned for covering the palisades of the Louvre Pyr- amid in graffiti during its construction in 1986, he became one of the artists of this move- ment. In 1992, he participated in the creation of a new trend later defined as “streetwear”, through his own brands Homecore and Lady Soul. He began working with textiles. This material had a particular importance in his eyes. Making clothing is a sculptural act in itself. For a decade, he was a contented entrepreneur. But that work demanded a number of concessions that Steph Cop was no longer willing to make and he stopped everything in 1998 in order to leave compromises behind.
He decided to step back, to write, to analyse his life, his surroundings and what was im- portant to him. Introspection took hold. The acronym ARO appeared for the first time in 2001, after the concept had emerged about a year earlier. Well before taking the shape we know today, ARO was only an abstraction, informal by nature. In 2007 when Steph Cop went to live in the Morvan.
Until today ARO has experienced many phases of evolution. From 2008-2013 he worked on the Wooden ARO as well as ARO 5.0. The famous 5.0 marked the end of the period of the Wooden ARO. To continue with his work and the evolution of ARO, Steph Cop needed to set his sights on a new challenge, a new project, a new aspiration in order to achieve the next monumental work. The ARO 8.0 was created in 2014/2015 and it is characterised by simplification and deconstruction. Steph Cop’s series work enables him to experiment and be bold in his endless quest for new balances and movements. Each silhouette has its own equilibrium and dynamic, based on the studies that guide the series, certainly, but also drawn from the persistent qualities of the wood. In further research the artist devel- oped versions of ARO such as Asymptote, Axiome, Copelini, Asymmetria and The Column. His last project Arboretum is another new departure in Steph Cop’s work, an installation in nature to be discovered in the coming years. The artist plans to place a very large sculp- ture in the Morvan Regional Nature Park and will be accessible to anyone who wishes to spend the time to visit the ARO and to get in tune with nature.