-Aurélien Froment, Idéal tombeau de Ferdinard Cheval at le Plateau, Paris till December 7, 2014
-And a still from the Olaf Nicolai’s video Rodakis which was projected during the Nouveau Festival in the center George Pompidou in Paris
The work of one man
The exhibition of Aurélien Froment that you can currently visit at The Plateau in Paris is a series of photos that reconstructs the story about the house of Ferdinard Cheval, a french mailman that started building an incredible house full of sculptures in 1867. This house is called Palais idéal and it is a quite eccentric national monument. Froment had been working in the restoration of this building for years. His work in restoration, in returning the work of art in some previous state has a scientific approach as well as an artistic one. Le double chapeau, these two roles are becoming quite popular nowadays but in the same time this very combination remains eclectic. The artist-researcher or artist-scientist who can come both from art or science and manages to work in both of them is the talk of these days. Mostly with the opening of the exhibition of Camile Henrot at Bétonsalon and her funding from science museums and funds that were recently reserved only for scientists. Besides the very theatrical presentation of this artwork-research which is not coming as a surprise given the interest of the artist in a more dramatical presentation, i was fascinated by the story he chose and the visual meta-language that accompanies it.
This source of inspiration reminded of another work from Olaf Nicolai that i saw while working for the Nouveau Festival at Pompidou. There is of course no comparison in terms of medium as Nicolai is working with the video and either in terms of presentation as Froment is more theatrical and Nicolai more minimalistic but there is a common spirit in the distance they keep both keep from the object of their interest. Though they are trying to remain objective, they try to create some kind of archive or documentary but it is quite clear that Froment cannot resist and he wants to show us most of his findings and Nicolai has a rather metaphysical approach. They both evoke a certain kind of passion, love and fascination for the great man behind the construction, the work of one man.
Rodakis and Cheval do not have an artistic background, they are not artists nor architects when they start building. Their decisions to build comes quite suddenly. I don’t believe it is a spotaneous decision but a profound desire of a man that has been looking for something special for years and when it finally comes to his way has no other option than follow it to the end. The same desire i observe to Froment, this desire to go deep down in this story, put as many sculptures as possible in front of his camera with a black bed site behind, isolate it, expose it in all its beauty. They were both men ahead of their time.They build in a style that is very modern for their time and sometimes even for today. Froment says about Cheval that his palace was new before it was old and that is something that we can clearly see in the restoration also. Rodakis had been considered as an amateur father of modernistic architecture. Cheval had a family but everybody died before him and Rodakis was never married and had a ghost life. The stories of these great men are rather sad. The idea of building a house is something common and usually comes when we have our own children, this desire to offer them a nest, a shelter, Hestia (a virgin goddess of the hearth, ancient Greek architecture, and the right ordering of domesticity, the family, and the state). They didn’t build like ordinary people, they built for grace, they built out of passion, out of great inspiration like they had their own Muse.
The restoration is a technique that turns back the damaged artwork in a previous state but also here it is a process of restoring the memory of the great men living before us, men that tried to reach the eternity with heavy architectural structures that resist to time but that was not enough.At this point, the artist comes as some sort of curator (from latin word cura) to heal this damaged memory. A memory is always restored subjectively through photos and documents that give us some clues, some facts but they always keep secrets.Also, the artistic work process gives the artist the freedom of interpretation while scientific method not. Especially, Froment works in the borders of these two methods that well that makes it difficult to decide where he stands every time.
Ryan Gander, My Head on Your Belly, marble resin 39 x 36 x 56 cm, 2013.
Camille Blatrix (b. 1984, Paris)
1.Mel Bochner, Wrap, Portrait of Eve Hess, 1966
2. Installation view Drawing Rool, Aleana Egan
"Language becomes objectified, heavy and material"
Taken from the review Dress and Armor: Aleana Egan at the Drawing Room of the london-based curator Anna Gritz from Issue 9 Now is Where.
Doing some research for my all bear fiction story.
It is not only Paola Pivi who has added some colour but also a medical threatment that turned the last polar bear purple in Argentina. It was only for a while though.
My polar bear has and will keep her funny colour till the end..of the story.
I am ultra-curious to see Camile Henrot’s show at Bétonsalon on the 20th of september. There was an inspiring text about how the exhibition took his name The Pale Fox. I can’t say that while i was reading about order and disorder, chaos and re-birth i wasn’t thinking about horoscopes but it’s only because there are such ancient concepts, primitive you can say that always existed or maybe a form of human re-assurance. I actually also like her thing about objects, as the question of the object in the art field is always intense and her role as a collector. I would like to go a little bit far away from her universe esthétique. As a fun of médiation documents of Pompidou i would like to suggest this one http://mediation.centrepompidou.fr/education/ressources/ENS-Object-EN/ENS-objet-EN.htm
It is for beginners of course but it’s great to go back to basics. I feel that in order to go on we have to take a look back and re-read the definitions. What it is an object?
Remediate the definition of object.
Remediate the everyday.
I was reading “The art performance, a critical anthology” and i was fascinated by some of the performers, mostly from troubled countries. Troubled countries is a quite a love and hate subject. Is Greece a troubled country? There is no war right? No apparent war at least but so many invisible everyday wars still. How can you identify yourself with lebanese people or how can you identify yourself with french people? Can you even identify yourself with a country?The performance apparently is about lebanese war and it is called who’s afraid of representation by Robin Mroué. In this video there is an extraordinary subject coming at last, the violence of the language.
Omer Fast. A video i watched like a year ago in London at my addiction fair, Frieze Art Fair. The everyday life of porno actors, a simultaneous narration as usual for Omer where the reality and fiction mix in a wonderful storytelling. And reality sometimes is more hardcore than fairytales. As my best friend moves to London, i have this british nostalgia.
Remediate the everyday over and over please.