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Xavier Veilhan

MAGASIN - Centre National d'Art Contemporain

Xavier Veilhan is an inventor of inventions, an artist-engineer who seeks the split second just after creation, the fragile moment of hesitation when anything is possible. He seeks the instance of the prototype. Take his recent solo show at Le Magasin, which featured La Ford T, 1997–99, a sculptural pad reconstruction of the Ford Model T. Moving back and forth on a metal rad that calls to mind assembly lines, La Ford T consists only of the car’s frame, steering mechanism, wheels, and motor; it is a blueprint, an outline—a calculated mix of industrial prototype and Minimalist sculpture.

On view as well was Le Tour (The potter’s wheel), 1996, a scooter that can operate a pottery wheel, as well as La Tour Eiffel, 1999, a digital image of two men dressed in nineteenth-century garb, maps in hand, facing an Eiffel Tower that has either broken in two or has yet to be constructed. The bicycles in

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