Sunday, January 20, 2013

"Chantiers", fifty works from Bertrand Lavier

"Things" become art because they are reinterpreted and the association of a stone on top of a refrigerator creates a new entity, this is called hybridization, one of the techniques used by the artist who has a background in horticulture, which explains his approach. The exhibition Bertrant Lavier, since 1969 at the Pompidou in Paris presents several "chantiers" illustrating different concepts developed by the artist over the years: addition, crossing, transposition, grafting, hybridization. A painted object like the grand piano now covered with a thick black coat brings emotions with its rough surface full of crevasses.
The leaf blower above the art deco chest leaves me perplex, the Giulietta, a damaged Alfa Romeo in the middle of the room  has a feel of deja vu,  Arman developed the idea in the past. The reinterpretation of Stella's work in neon is visually challenging. Maybe the small mobile from Calder above a refrigerator from the Calder brand is intended as a pun?  The cold, white, angular shaped freezer contrasts with the sensuous red lipped sofa from Dali and so on.

An interesting area includes a collection of objects mounted on pedestals, like sculptures in a museum. The skateboard, the motorcycle helmet, a saw become symbols and the shining African sculpture cast in nickel-plated bronze looses its status and becomes an object.

The curator of the exhibition makes the visit entertaining and informative with the works grouped into four themes: after the readymade: form and feeling, new impressions of Africa, the photo without camera, the art of transposition.
The Surrealists collected objects to stimulate creativity. The artist claims that his creations, sums of two objects are more than each object and he aims to bring  emotions to the readymade.
However the humorless work stays remote and dry.

photographs by the author:
"Burgundy Stone on refrigerator" 1989
"Ibo", 2008
"La Bocca/Bosch", 2005

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