“If I were a frog I’d live in a fountain”: The very title of Bethan Huws’s recent exhibition told a little story. But this was no fairy talethe idea of a frog who is really an enchanted prince waiting to be transformed by a kiss holds no interest for her. If she were a frog (or a Frenchman?) she’d be wide-awake and sitting precisely where Marcel Duchamp began his role-playing game with the readymadenamely, in the “fountain.”
In 2007, Huws made a neon work bearing the words AU FOND DU CERVEAU IL Y A UNE FONTAINE. In 2009, he made a version featuring the English translationAT THE BASE OF THE BRAIN THERE IS A FOUNTAIN. For Huws, in other words, a fountain doesn’t only stand for the readymade. Here it is also a concept from which new visual and linguistic objectifications are constantly emerging. It can refer to “origin,” to an absolute and unconditioned beginning,
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