Roman Signer


Drawing, installation, performance, sculpture...

Roman Signer

Past: January 8 → February 19, 2011

Since the mid-seventies, Roman Signer has showed and re-enacted paradoxes. The mini-shows and non-happenings generated by his sculptures, installations and performances and documented by his videos and photographs form a permanent questioning on the economy of entertainment. With a light approach, his work tackles modern concerns such as efficiency, performance or productivity, as well as our deeply rooted obsession with functionalism.

Renowned for his “Action/Sculptures”, Signer has often been defined as a pyrotechnical artist or even given the label of “explosion-artist”, but he refuses to be circumscribed by the abundant literature and many remarks circulating on his work. The body of work that he has created is in itself extremely versatile, encompassing various disciplines such as happening, sculpture, drawing, installation-work, photography and video. Regardless of the chosen medium, the creative process often reveals, by means of a structured suspension in time, what is scarcely or very seldom visible. Signer’s skills are all turned towards the reproduction of a magic moment, almost ritualized by his work: the moment when slight transformations of shape and matter are made possible or at least imaginable.

Signer combines the simplicity of everyday gestures and materials to the complexity of technical devices and physical phenomena, activated without the necessity of keeping them under total control. The metaphysical aspects and intellectual prowess of the work are direct results of the total absence of evaluation-criteria, here success or failure hold no value. Perilous happenings and absurd circus-like situations are staged with subtlety and follow the conductive lines of free-will and randomness. The recurrent enactment-process is backed by the artist’s legend, and his aura weighs as much as his physical presence. Signer’s presence is sometimes triggering and off-camera, while sometimes he turns into a real stuntman: the Sisyphus-like boulder pushing character of his own work.

Caroline Soyez-Petithomme — Traduction Frieda Schumann
  • Opening Saturday, January 8, 2011 at 6 PM
03 Le Marais Zoom in 03 Le Marais Zoom out

4 passage Sainte-Avoye

75003 Paris

T. 01 53 60 90 30 — F. 01 53 60 90 31


Opening hours

Tuesday – Friday, 10 AM – 6 PM
Saturday, 11 AM – 7 PM

The artist

  • Roman Signer