Jean-Max Colard

  • Xavier Veilhan

    Xavier Veilhan’s new exhibition bears the title of his film Furtivo (Stealth, 2008), recently made by the artist but not on view in the show. Yet the works included here are all linked to the dreamlike world of this thirty-minute piece, in which we follow the singer and musician Sébastien Tellier (with whom Veilhan has collaborated frequently) on an enigmatic voyage from the earth to the sea, from the Fiat factory in Turin to a sumptuous sailboat christened Stealth. The gallery’s two separate spaces were secretly linked by this absent filmic narrative, which lent coherence and atmosphere to what

  • “Estratos”

    Heterocronías. Tiempo, arte y arqueologías del presente” (Heterochronies: Time, Art, and Archaeologies of the Present)—a series of talks held in conjunction with the exhibition “Estratos,” curated by Nicolas Bourriaud—takes its title from a neologism coined by Bourriaud and Miguel Ángel Hernández on the model of Michel Foucault’s “hétérotopies”; it seeks to express the juxtaposition, interpenetration, and coalescence of various temporalities in contemporary art practices. Because, in fact, artists today are caught between gears: between the hyperflux of images and exhibitions (and the

  • Cyprien Gaillard

    Perhaps you remember those T-shirts printed to look like the kind sold at rock concerts but peddled by street vendors at the exits of the Armory Show or the Venice Biennale? They were printed with the names DAMIEN HIRST, VANESSA BEECROFT, AND MAURIZIO CATTELAN—the new pop stars of art. If so, then you already know something about Cyprien Gaillard, the artist who (with Payam Sharifi) made the shirts and documented them in the book World Tour 2002–2003 Archive.

    You may have also seen Gaillard’s beautiful videos of romantic landscapes suddenly inundated by a thick, white smoke. Gaillard and accomplices,

  • Alain Bublex

    What is an exhibition? In the eyes of Alain Bublex, it appears to be not only the time and place for a certain visibility given to a work but also a kind of break, a moment of suspension of the work: in other words, a temporary adjustment, the provisional immobilization of something in constant evolution, which will go on its way once again when the exhibition is over. Everything is both in suspension and in progress, arrested at the project stage. For example, in the four pieces titled 1/24ème (all works 2006), small Japanese model cars have been placed under glass like precious objects even

  • Gilles Barbier

    To penetrate the universe of Gilles Barbier, a particularly unclassifiable artist and an enemy of the slick, is to enter a proliferating fiction, a riotous rewriting of the contemporary world. No doubt Barbier’s first full-career survey show, which features 170 drawings, gouaches, and sculptures made since 1993, will clash devilishly with Norman Foster’s restrained architecture. In contrast to the museum’s straight lines, the French artist will construct a series of imaginative spaces: among them, a walk-through pie chart made of resin and earth (complete with giant

  • Laurent Grasso

    What does it mean to be contemporary? It depends with whom or with what. We are always contemporary in relation to something, to someone. To the Internet, to Viktor Yushchenko, to the war in Iraq, to plasma screens? On this question, there is no “we” that holds up: Born in 1968, I am not the same “contemporary” as my fifth-floor neighbor, born in 1974. And each instant renegotiates this bond of contemporaneity, this relationship to the world—because being contemporary with someone or something entails a distinctive manner of bonding with one’s time.

    Sometimes, contemporaneousness is almost

  • Saâdane Afif

    A little “new French theory” first of all: “Plasticity today demands access to the concept.” In several works, including La Plasticité au soir de l’écriture: Dialectique, destruction, déconstruction (Éditions Léo Scheer, 2005), the philosopher Catherine Malabou attempts to elucidate an increasingly pregnant “motor scheme” in philosophy, art, neurobiology, and psychoanalysis: plasticity. While the neurobiologist Jean-Pierre Changeux uses the term “plasticity of the brain” to refer to the capacity of synapses to form or reform a bit of information, Malabou’s concept of plasticity refers to

  • “Making Things Public”

    The night before my visit to “Making Things Public,” I had a bizarre dream: After a modification in the electoral process, and because the major political parties were not able to come up with a fully legal candidate, the State Assembly, urgently convened, had appointed Bruno Latour, the philosopher and sociologist of science, President of the French Republic! The new chief of state immediately announced a presidential regime change and the inauguration of the Sixth Republic. Another strong decision: He did not appoint a single commerce or finance minister but surrounded himself instead with

  • Biennale d'Art Contemporain de Lyon

    “What is the tense of artwork today?” Curators Sans and Bourriaud make this question the focus of Lyon’s next biennale, which charts temporal experience in art—the slowness of painting, the speed of the digital arts, and the virtual nature of computer time. Some sixty artists—including Daniel Buren, Yoko Ono, Sophie Calle, Philippe Parreno, and Rirkrit Tiravanija—use time as a medium, building material, and mode of engagement. Wim Delvoye even presents the evolution of the La Vache Qui Rit cow through his own collection of cheese labels. Plus, as an

  • Matthieu Laurette

    More than video, photography, or any other medium, Matthieu Laurette’s favored mode of appearance is, precisely, the appearance. This tautology says a good deal about his art of endless refraction, a self-reflective oeuvre that nevertheless takes on, perhaps not the lowest forms, but in any case the least reputable ones in the realm of television and media, from talk shows to celebrity gossip. It’s not surprising to have seen his appearance—excuse me, exhibition—at Yvon Lambert open with some man-in-the-street interviews: Made with a team from NOATV, the local cable access network in New Orleans,

  • Pia Rönicke

    There is something documentary-like about Pia Rönicke’s first solo exhibition in Paris. Except this is not a film, a fact all the more surprising when you consider that this thirty-year-old artist became known for her animated videos—playful, subtly critical collages of photographs, music, architectural plans, drawings, and advertising images, some of which have just been released on video. At a time when artists’ names function as logos in this industry that contemporary art is becoming, we should admire the daring of an artist who does not hesitate to change her practice completely, to abandon

  • Wayne Gonzales

    I can still remember Wayne Gonzales’s series of paintings constructed around the figure of Lee Harvey Oswald and the Kennedy assassination, shown in 2001 at the Paula Cooper Gallery and at the Consortium of Dijon. Of particular note was the juxtaposition of paintings of an acid pink and yellow ad for Jack Ruby’s nightclub, a stripper who looked like Marilyn Monroe, and a ballistic diagram from the Warren Commission report (Magic Bullet Theory, 2001)—so many postphotographic indices of a history already constituted yet still in fragments. Far from the tidy narratives of Oliver Stone in his film

  • Xavier Veilhan

    For his first solo exhibition at the Centre Pompidou, one of the best French artists to come out of the ’90s fills Espace 315 with a “total work of art”: A distorted pattern of squares covering the walls manipulates the perceptual dimensions of the room, and a monumental sculpture of a boat is lifted off the ground by a polyester wake.

    As in his Projet Hyperréaliste presented at the 2003 Biennale de Lyon, the work of Xavier Veilhan revisits modernity through visual adventures that heighten the experience of perception. For his first solo exhibition at the Centre Pompidou, one of the best French artists to come out of the ’90s fills Espace 315 with a “total work of art”: A distorted pattern of squares covering the walls manipulates the perceptual dimensions of the room, and a monumental sculpture of a boat is lifted off the ground by a polyester wake. Also on view are a new Light Machine (a cross between a movie screen and a

  • Gilles Barbier

    What do artworks think about? What do they dream of while hanging in the museum, seeing us walk past them—at times rushed or indifferent—when all they are trying to do is catch our eye and hold our attention? And what curious, vulgar, or abstruse thoughts come to their minds when we stand fixedly before them for long minutes, or then again at night, when the museum is emptied of all visitors? Such questions may seem ridiculous yet become decisive in the face of works like Jeff Koons’s mirrored Rabbit, 1986, for example, and they are at the heart of the sculptural work of Gilles Barbier as well.

  • Édouard Levé

    A useful piece of information before we start: The artist Edouard Levé is also a writer and has published a collection of 533 projects entitled Oeuvres (P.O.L., 2003), beginning: “I. A book describes the works an author has thought of but has not produced.” Which is to say a miscellaneous list of possible paintings, videos, and performances; architectural models cut up into sections, crazy people walking in the street filmed from behind, a museum in which all the paintings are covered in black fabric, a painter who recopies the abstract canvases made by monkeys, and so on. In his book, Levé

  • “Coollustre”

    The art critic and curator Eric Troncy’s show “Coollustre” ends with a beastly prank. Minimal, conceptual, and made entirely of Plexiglas except for its cushion, a dog bed sits enthroned at the end of the exhibition, the perfect culmination of the history of modern, postmodern, and contemporary art, by way of the economy of fashion, Sol LeWitt’s cubes, Dan Graham’s glass pavilions, and the relational aesthetic.

    A true provocation, open to multiple interpretations, the ne plus ultra of recycling, Gucci Dog, 2003, is typical of Troncy’s exhibition practice. In “Coollustre” (a title borrowed from

  • Jimmie Durham

    The Musée d’Art Contemporain de Mar- seille is not an easy place for an artist to handle. For example, a marble pavement is no doubt a very nice thing. It looks very smart in the lobby of the Plaza Hotel. But—and artists know this well—it is a problem, a real challenge, in a museum of contemporary art. That marble is a burdensome luxury that lends the MAC the look of a chic white cube—well, more chic than cube—underlining its already intimidating power of legitimization through the immediate display of an external sign of wealth. But where some other artists take over the place and its floor

  • Chen Zhen

    More than just a tribute to this major figure of non-Western art who practiced an “alternative globalism” before such a thing became fashionable, “Silence sonore” (Echoing silence) assembles a never-before-seen group of major works.

    “A few months before passing away, Chen toured the Palais de Tokyo with me. Construction hadn’t even begun, but we’d already discussed his exhibition project.” Still reeling from the blow of the Chinese artist’s death in 2000, Jérôme Sans prepared the institution for that exhibition. More than just a tribute to this major figure of non-Western art who practiced an “alternative globalism” before such a thing became fashionable, “Silence sonore” (Echoing silence) assembles a never-before-seen group of major works in addition to drawings and technical sketches. The publication of a monograph by

  • Leandro Erlich

    The globe-trotters of the contemporary-art world remember it still: In June 2001, at the 49th Venice Biennale, Leandro Erlich, representing Argentina (that year exhibiting in the Central Post Office), invited people to participate in a strange experience—to enter a swimming pool fully clothed and immerse themselves, without getting wet, in an enormous empty blue container, its roof a transparent sheet of Plexiglas covered by a thin layer of water. But the story of La Pileta (The swimming pool), 1999/2001, did not end there. Viewers could also climb to the upper level of the post office and see

  • Melik Ohanian

    What is cosmopolitiques? Not merely the title of a new French journal, conceived by philosopher Isabelle Stengers and sociologist of science Bruno Latour, but the name given to political systems that also embrace the nonhuman, according a place to trees, whales, genes, seas, mountains—even to the Gulf Stream, currently threatened by global warming. “With what other beings do we want to continue to exist? With what sort of world?”—such are the basic questions raised by this new ecology, which rejects an essentially rationalistic and totalizing concept of nature. Without reducing his