Cabinet Da-End 03
Cabinet Da-End 03
Past: May 21 → July 20, 2013
For its third season, Galerie Da-End has invited over thirty artists to create a contemporary “cabinet de curiosités” with a floral theme. Blossoming in this distinctive place, the flowers seem to probe our ability to rethink mankind and above all, to explore its less appealing side. In this case specifically to “extract beauty from evil”. So Flowers in their thousands then, but these ones do not always evoke the spring.
Man is projecting himself in everything and the flower is the means of expressing distress. On the walls of this gallery-dwelling, hang as clouds, drawings and canvases, as well as collages, entomological boxes, and as many personified plants as life stories. An animated vanitas displays a bunch of bluebells, which ceaselessly perishes and regenerates. Elsewhere, a myriad of colourful flowers covers the emaciated body of an individual with bulging eyes, whilst a skull decorated with green foliage is reminiscent of the destiny awaiting the living beings. These are the contemporary memento mori.
There are also flower portraits, by famous Japanese photographers who might be less well-known in this still life exercise. There is a photo of a rose at the point of its perfect and ephemeral beauty or the out of focus photo of a mysteriously highlighted anemone. Or another of a flower made of bones, which as soon as it is created and grasped into memory returns to the earth. This last, complex work, not only alludes to flowers but tackles the universal question of the fragility of life as a whole as do other dispersed works, which are uncovered like treasures. Here, a glass tree and its burgeoning fetus glint in the spring sunshine. Further on there, is a wax sculpture, which seems to be more alive than the human being. Then there are porcelain or terracotta sculptures which, as if to better preserve their fragility and beauty, nestle on the cabinet shelves. At the back of this dark garden, a hot and bright greenhouse appears to be suspended in the sky, brimming with an endless sea of flowers made from tanned hide. The incongruity is striking.
This exhibition which leads us on a voyage through the intricacies of the human mind, also takes us on a journey around the world of plants to the heart of distant countries. Foremost to the Land of the Rising Sun where ikebana, the art of flower arranging, symbolises the linear harmony between the sky, the earth and mankind. Then on to other places, to more ancient times, towards these countries where headdresses with golden flowers evoke love whilst murderous weapons adorned with a thousand petals evoke war. Today in this gallery, which looks like a house abandoned by time, a world has been recreated, a world in which Da-End stakes its claim. Or rather an interspace, where men and acquaintances cross paths, where art combines with the most artisanal techniques (or is it the opposite?). And what can be said about technology, about this digital stereolithographic sculpture, other than they are part of this interspace, this introduction of a new flower aesthetic, which offers a future depiction? Meanwhile the sculpture projection of an atomic dandelion reminds us of our constantly changing system. For a while, in the long grass of this Paradise Lost, the paths is unclear. At the heart of our plant-filled poetic cabinet, the flowers encourage visitors to cross various temporalities and to transcend the boundaries of the reality, the imagination or the virtual.
In fine, in every nook and cranny of this obscure but delectable place, we are confronted by secret and
inaccessible worlds, by questions provoked by the mysteries of life and the world, by as many voyages as artists with complex personalities, concealing none of their demons in their works. The flowers that they have created gracefully converse in the classic setting of this House of Wonders, which captivated the curious as well as fantasists in former times and as proved here, continues to draw enthusiasm and questioning.
Opening Saturday, May 18, 2013 4 PM → 8 PM
Une composition florale ikebana fraîchement installée rivalise de beauté avec une chorégraphie Buto empreinte d’élégance et toujours en dialogue avec les œuvres exposées.
Nobuyoshi Asai — Performance Buto — Blood sleeps standing up Performance Saturday, May 18, 2013 at 7 PM
17, rue Guénégaud
T. 01 43 29 48 64
Tuesday – Thursday, 2 PM – 7 PM
Friday & Saturday, 11 AM – 7 PM