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21 August 2012

Marina Gadonneix, Ceci n’est pas un exercice*

Marina Gadonneix’s work weaves a complex link between documentary and fiction through photographs of places given over to temporary neglect. In each of the series presented here, the artist explores the startling transition of a rugged territory to a fantastical image, of a form of evidence of reality to its most metaphorical mental construction.

Landscapes presents a series of singular images: matte shooting stages, sometimes blue, sometimes green, used as neutral backgrounds for special effects in film and television. Monochrome surfaces, a range of saturated colours. The captions of these screens, both empty and full, conjure up landscapes as far away as they are interchangeable, free of all definitive interpretation. And it is no accident that the piece presented here was realised in collaboration with the artist Marcelline Delbecq, who took possession of it to write Blackout. Between fiction and reality, real landscapes and mental landscapes, visions and drifting, the text, in its written or recorded form, may either add to or subtract from the images.

The House That Burns Everyday recalls a fable whose story, in ashes, would no longer reach us. Marina Gadonneix has chosen to haunt a dummy house used by firemen to become familiar with fire and fighting it. In short, a room of fiction. Fire has raged, soon it will flare up again. In this interstice, Gadonneix collects these artificial ruins. From a distance, the spectator can cope with the worst. The worst, in this work, is always yet to come.

With Playground Disorder, the organisation of the images is noticeably different. The places are no longer banal. They’re training grounds for the catastrophes that terrorise our everyday existence: fires, planes taken hostage. Playful and yet threatening images. Although something disturbing occurs, its cause nevertheless remains hidden. All we can make out is smoke, a leitmotif found in all the photographs. Confronted with this element, we can’t help seeing the distress signal fire of a world on the road to ruin.

 

Amaury da Cunha

 

* Ceci n’est pas un exercice: This is not an Exercise

 

Exhibition venue: Forges, Parc des Ateliers, Rencontres d’Arles 2012.