los-angeles

JEQU, BLEU (Mid), 2011, mixed media. Installation view.

JEQU

University of Southern California, Roski School of Fine Arts

JEQU, BLEU (Mid), 2011, mixed media. Installation view.

Like a good tagline, the final phrase of the wriggling, poetic manifesto accompanying “BLEU,” the latest exhibition by JEQU (curator Howie Chen and artist/attorney Jason Kakoyiannis), cut earnestness with cool illegibility: “It’s about a feeling,” they wrote—and yet, the mundane components of the show amounted to nothing if not an airy intellectual impression. The installation BLEU, 2011, consisted of three “sensorial arrangements” corresponding to the top, middle, and base notes of the men’s fragrance Bleu de Chanel, displayed in sequence for six days each. The cologne had been resynthesized into three separate scents, each emitted in turn from a ceramic ring diffuser placed around a low-watt lightbulb in a cheap white sconce on the floor. As the exhibition progressed, the gallery’s fluorescent lighting dimmed accordingly: bare and bright for “top,” gelled purple for “mid,”

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