The impressions and expressions mouthed by the voice of reason are formed, in part, by filmic deposits of consumption. Here in the crevices, the skeleton liaises with the flesh, the consumer coalesces with the sovereign subject.
In the margin of the mouth this culture thrives, eroding the enamel of the tooth and irritating the healthy gingiva of the gum line. Hardening against the hardest substance of the body, debris wields it own menacing synthesis. Calculus cannot be removed through toothbrushing or with interdental aids and can only be removed through professional cleaning.Teeth function as a forensic record of a unique individual. In postmortem cases, teeth are among the final vestiges of a person that remain as the decomposition process takes effect.
The teeth often serve as a last resort in identifying cadavers limited by the absence of any other distinguishing features or in circumstances involving mass casualties. Somewhat like a photo negative, they aid in comparative imaging but on a more atomic level, teeth can provide the genetic material they work so robustly to protect.
Through extrapolation, the individual is redeemed from the unknown. Cast in the detritus of one’s own experience, the tooth sustains narrates histories of care and neglect, forming the teeth against their own grain.
Snacking, smoking, salivating, the precipitation of minerals, teeth sustain the inlay of the desiring machine’s nuance like ballistic fingerprints embossed onto a bullet by the cartridge of a gun. The wear and tear of consumption bring a humanistic layer to the otherwise arcane materiality of the body, revealing everything from age, country of residence, socioeconomic status, profession, hobby, among other mobilizers of speech and instigators of bite.Conspicuous consumption accentuates the surface politics of the mouth through the ultimate custom job, most embodied in the iconic rapper’s grill. Superimposed over the diffused, innate texture of the teeth, the spectacular front is transcendental.
Formal limitations of the individual’s mouth assume an alchemic potential. Light, in its refractive multiplicity of spectrums, is released from its trapped surface, back in to the chaos and noise of the universe.
Lili Reynaud-Dewar was born in 1975 in La Rochelle, France, she lives and works in Grenoble, France. Her works has been displayed in numerous solo exhibitions: at the Kunstverein in Hamburg, the K11 in Shanghai, the Contemporary Art Museum St Louis, the New Museum in New York, Index the Swedish Contemporary Art Foundation in Stockholm, the Consortium of Dijon, 21er Raum – Belvedere in Vienna, the Outpost in Norwich, the Magasin - Centre National d’Art Contemporain of Grenoble, the kunsthalle Basel, the Fondation Calder in New York (performance), the Serpentine Cinema in London (performance), the FRAC Champagne-Ardenne in Reims.
She also participated in group shows at the Museum Folkwang in Essen, the Musée des arts décoratifs in Paris, the Arsenale in Venice for the 56th Venice Biennale, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, the Centre Pompidou, the Frac - Plateau, the Palais de Tokyo and the Fond d’entreprise Ricard in Paris, the CAPC in Bordeaux, the Cafam in Beijing, the Logan Center for the Arts in Chicago, the Kunsthalle Fribourg, the Generali Foundation and the Mak in Vienna, the Witte de With in Rotterdam; as well as in the 2013 Lyon Biennale and the 5th Berlin Biennale. Lili Reynaud-Dewar is the winner of the 15th Fondation d’entreprise Ricard Prize.In 2017 she will present two solo shows : at the Museion in Bolzano and at Vleeshal Center for Contemporary Art in Middelburg.
Text by Deanna Havas