# 49-4802-03OC31C  BACK  ARCHIVE

Geographies # 3

Galerie Chantal Crousel Paris  •  France [FR]

Un an plus tard, «Geographies # 3» s’enchaîne naturellement après «Geographies # 2». Cinq artistes se réunissent autour de cette notion et en donnent chacun leur version: Fikret Atay, Jean-Luc Moulène, Mélik Ohanian, De Rijke/De Rooij, Susanne Bürner.
Leur rapport à la géographie est celui d’une attitude existentielle: celle des frontières mouvantes, retracées, adoptées le temps d’une nécessité. Une psycho-géographie. C’est l’idée de l’abandon d’une certitude, de la mise en abîme — c’est l’art du passage.

GEOGRAPHIES # 3 comes naturally after GEOGRAPHIES #2, a year later. Five artists gather around this  notion, each one giving his own personal version of the theme: Fikret Atay, Jean-Luc Moulène, Melik  Ohanian, De Rijke / De Rooij, Susanne Bürner. They all have an existential attitude towards geography:
moving frontiers, redrawn ones, adopted for the sake of a necessity. A psycho-geography. It is the idea of  the letting go of certainties, of « mise-en-abîme »- it is the art of the passage.

Fikret ATAY
Fast and Best, 2002
7 min 29

Filmed in the area of Batman, the city where the artist lives, this video work examines in the most direct  and subtle way the notion of discipline and collective expression which can gather and direct groups of  people through a sought ideal. We watch a preparatory rehersal for a kurdish traditionnal dance competition. Fikret Atay frames us in the fascination of the jeans culture, of folk dance, and military parade. With a great simplicity of means and a clinic eye, the artist, whose camera only films the legs of the participants, makes an event, a street become a theatre where local and global ideology face each other and evolve.

The focusing point of the artist is the invading and unavoidable language of powers facing each other here without real contact or communication. The schizophrenia of mondialisation comes to us from Batman, a small town in Turkey where the local people take no profit whatsoever from the petrol exploitation by the americans in this region’s rich soil. The capturing strenght of the video’s soundtrack renders the efficacy of imposition by the means of strenght, mass, repetition of values easely recognized and so forth, transmitted. Facing this dance with military resonances, we understand that the language of power is deeply rooted in man, as much in his politics as in his sensuality. Baffling and effective.

This piece was purchased by Tate Collection, along with « Dance of the Rebels ».

Susanne BÜRNER
Untitled, 2003
5 min 43

The Berlin-based artist Susanne Bürner is concerned with the vocabulary of suspense, and, mostly, its  emotional response for the spectator, in her videos and photographic work. « Untitled »explores the very thin line between banality and horror, through an irrational tension risen by imprecise, unclear and hallucinatory domestic scenes in three rapid sketches. In each scene,whereas everyday life seems to be running its natural course, a light, a character or the
insisting soundtrack taken from thriller / horror movies upsets the banality of domestic settings. Like in Henry Jame’s The Turn of the Screw, the small distance between innocence and evilness is up to the spectator (or observer) to cross. Our primitive and somewhat constitutive fears and hesitations are part of the work, which they enhance. The artist is also currently showing her work in a group exhibition at the Kunsthalle, Düsseldorf.

The Point of Departure, 2002
35 mm colour film with optical sound
26 min

The two dutsh artists Jeroen de Rijke and Willem de Rooij, who have been working together for more than ten years, are showing The Point of Departure in this first collaboration with the gallery. Within the minimal tradition of their work, this film focuses on the observation of the patterns of a caucasian carpet belonging to the Rijksmuseum, playing with the laws of cinematographic narrative.

« The work has its roots in their detailed researches into carpets, their patterns and the regions where they are made. (…) The background to the piece gives it clear political connotations. With the camera focusing and zooming, with the tempo changing, sometimes abruptly, and one shot cutting into another, the motion of the film seems like an uncertain foray into some primeval matter without any indications of scale or proportion. »
From the catalogue of the exhibition Spaces and Films / Espaces et Films 1998 – 2002 at the Van
Abbemuseum Eindhoven and Villa Arson Nice

Jardin, Herculanum, mars 1999
Cibachrome on aluminium
Cathédrale, Cologne, 16 03 2002
Cibachrome on aluminium
52×40 cm
Petits os, Yokohama, 24 11 2000.
Cibachrome on aluminium
40 x 52 cm
Ticket noir, Paris, 11 02 2003.
Cibachrome on aluminium
Passport, Saïda, Liban, 01 06 2002.
Cibachrome on aluminium
40 x 52 cm

Jean-Luc Moulène presents, for the very first time, his work at the gallery. A selection of five photographs taken in different locations and contexts, show transitory objects or places the artist has captured or visited. A passport, a burnt subway ticket, a cathedral, are all about what they show but also what they stand for, be it spirituality or identity, or anything else, for that matter. This iconical substance of the images reflects on the status of Moulène’s work, which conveys through and in the image the destiny of representation.

These five images and the objects or situations they display are as much about what they show than what they hide or only hint to. The small bones lying on an ironical bed of dead leaves in « Little Bones »show a moment in life’s circularity, from consciousness to sheer materiality. The burnt ticket is a remain of a moment in someone’s life, now useless, but still part of the ever moving circle of transmutation, between image and dust.

Moulène has currently two main exhibitions of his work at the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Nantes and at the Contemporary Art Center in Geneva.

You are mY destinY-comment, 2003

Melik Ohanian presents a work inspired by his exhibition at the Atlanta College of Art (March 2003) « You Are My Destiny », (…) marked by two terrible events – the Armenian genocide on the one hand, starting point for the exodus of the survivors and the second Irak War decided by the hawks of the Bush administration on the other -, its raw material printed as eleven posters framed in big light boxes, is structured around what I would call here the « Atlanta Journal », a real diary of the artist and the exhibition. It tells in detail an itinerary full of obstacles, and a series of accidents where, again and always, individual and collective story meet. »From the text of Jean-Christophe Royoux on « You are mY destinY-comment « .


Artists : Fikret Atay, Jean-Luc Moulène, Melik Ohanian, De Rijke / De Rooij, Susanne Bürner

More Infos