Paul Pouvreau — Au propre comme au figuré

Exhibition

Photography

Paul Pouvreau
Au propre comme au figuré

Ends in about 1 month: November 15, 2019 → January 18, 2020

With his new work, les Invasives Invasive, Pouvreau continues his thirty-year project of hijacking household objects, those insignificant things that take over our modes of consumption. He overturns the codes of classical representation in photography. No anecdotes, no certainty. There is nothing that is «ready to think» or «ready to see». His work lies between reality and fiction; it is a metaphor for our times, where the viewer’s gaze gets lost in the wanderings of the imagination.

Paul%20pouvreau,%20les%20furies,%202016,%20pp1909007 1 medium
Paul Pouvreau, Les Furies, 2016 Pigment inkjet print on Canson paper 300 g — 30 × 44 inches © Paul Pouvreau / Courtesy Les Douches la Galerie, Paris

Since the early 1980s, Paul Pouvreau has been developing a body of photographic work that highlights ordinary, insignificant objects: domestic appliances, boxes, plastic bags, dust… His aim is “to focus attention on those little things of no consequence that often house just about everything”. While plumbing the real, Pouvreau also dips into the History of Art and sets up his photographs as installations. What interests him is the way in which the visual signs he chooses (logos and various types of packaging) dialogue with both everyday space and the space of the exhibition. Continually questioning the image and its representation, his artistic work integrates drawings and collages as well.

Literally and Figuratively highlights the equivalency of multiple meanings that conceal paradoxes and contradictions connected to representation, nature, beauty, rubbish and artificiality, comparing ideas and materials. For the exhibition on display at Les Douches La Galerie, the artist has brought together three groups of works: Faits divers (2003), Mascarades (2015–) and Les invasives, (2018–). These works are very much groups and not series, a term that is often used in photography and that the artist sees as somewhat conventional. “I tend to use the word group because in the things I develop there are elements that come back over time. An idea I created two years ago may appear in another form, modifying or clarifying a question that I might have dealt with at a given moment, as if it remained just as current.”