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  • Provenance

    Galerie la B.A.N.K, Paris; Private Collection, Paris
     

  • Exhibited

    Paris, Centre d’art Contemporain d'Istres, Ecrans Noirs, October 27 - December 20, 2005; Paris, Galerie la B.A.N.K, Tête Dure, June 1 - September 2, 2006

  • Catalogue Essay

    A vast mural composition, Ecran noir appears to be a large-scale painting yet is conceived from hundreds of VHS cassettes. These cassettes, in a departure from their characteristic usage, are transformed into decorative elements, creating a work that upon first inspection rings back to the geometric compositions of concrete or minimalist art.  In accordance with these principals, the elements of motif repetition and the economy of means are prevalent throughout the present work. However what makes both the artist and the work so strong is the direct challenge Ecran noir brings to the basis of concrete art, namely that art should not symbolize or represent anything further than what we see.
    Ecran noir benefits from an intentional ambiguity between a plastic vocabulary borrowed from minimalism and the artist’s choice to use VHS cassettes. Placed side by side, these ordinary and seemingly banal objects, project upon the viewer a wall of archaic relics of yesterday’s technology which have been rendered obsolete in today’s world.  These cassettes once conveyed images, sounds and information and were tools of communication. Today they have become known as tools of propaganda or extremist threats. They comment on the violence and terror that are hidden within this wall of images that the viewer cannot see but can only imagine or fear. The elusive content of these cassettes are disquieting signs of an old world which stands in direct contrast to the minimalism of their appearance.
    Each individual cassette projects its own cinema, its own anxieties, its own secular fears and fantasies. The work comments on the power of images, from ones we have seen to ones we only think we have seen, from images we are shown to those that we interpret. The semiotic value of this wall of objects (and hidden images) is compounded by the fact that media images can often be visual decoys. This powerful work serves to reinforce the artist’s inquiry into the degree of reality and the level of truth found in each individual image.
    (Adapted from Marie Deparis’ 2007 essay on the artist’s website)

122

Ecran Noir N°1

2005
420 VHS video cassettes. 
81 1/2 x 155 1/2 x 1 in. (207 x 395 x 2.5 cm).
This work is unique.

Estimate
$30,000 - 40,000 

FILM

June 24 2010
New York