Paris/Poitiers, France

Théodore Fivel

Le Commissariat/Le Confort Moderne

These were Théodore Fivel’s first solo shows, marking his formal debut as an artist. Fivel’s background is mainly in performance—in 2009, he founded the Parisian cabaret group Le Grand Bizarre—and this inflected both exhibitions in some intriguingly theatrical ways.

In “Mais! Où est ma scène?” at Le Confort Moderne in Poitiers, there were just six pieces, but Fivel’s goal was to create an entire environment. At the entrance to the exhibition was I See You, I See Thru, I See True (all works 2010), a spray-painted mural of two great golden eyes. The piece is indicative of one of Fivel’s chief concerns: the reactivation of pagan symbols and myths by way of up-to-date materials, techniques, and attitudes. Having crossed this literal and symbolic threshold, a viewer then entered a darkened environment, in which the pieces were very hard to make out. Most striking was Sand #92185, a bright painting

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