Happy 90th Mr Odermatt!
Galerie Vallois is dedicating this fun exhibition to the Swiss brigadier who came to fame thanks to Harald Szeeman at the 2001 Venice Biennial, with a novel selection from his famous series « Accidents ».
In Odermatt’s photographs, the violence of the vehicles’ collision seems literally appeased by the tranquillity found in the snowy landscapes, whereas the shock is very much tangible in the 1974 totemic compression of an Alfa Romeo Giulietta by César, or the films of the Aérofiat 2.1 road trials, an improbable prototype created by Alain Bublex in 1995.
With Richard Jackson, the collision is the source of an explosive pictorial action: on January 22nd 2012, the Californian artist orchestrated the crash of a scale model Cessna, filled with fresh paint, against a 6-metre canvas bearing the quot « Accidents in Abstract Painting ». A large colour photograph as well as a video testify in the exhibition of the force of this «accidental painting».
The effects and traces of violence are manifest in the Colère de télévision by Arman, rare surviving work from an ensemble of televisions on which the artist had expressed his anger at the opening of the 1976 Fiac.
Impact is at the heart of Jimmie Durham’s video Collected Stones, a series of 13 clips in which stones are thrown on objects, furniture, or finally sink a ship at the bottom of a bathtube. Traces of shocks even become scars on a Marbre Rose slab, painted by the artist.
In Peter Fischli & David Weiss’s video Der Lauf Der Dinge, theatre is at play, plentiful with chain reactions and other equilibrium exercises, where the artists play with fire, air, water, gravity and even a variety of corrosive liquids, thus determining chain series unwinding the course of things and objects.
While, from his part, Paul Kos plays with fire in a perilous balance exercise between a broomstick and a candle, other equilibrist’s games – funnily recalling the Equilibrium series by Fischli & Weiss – are being drawn out of the paper cut-outs of two works by Mexican artist Jose Dávila, as well as an extraordinary tension defying all understanding within his stone and glass sculpture Joint Effort.
Fortunately, pile-up in art does not cause any damage, on the contrary, it fosters abundance and juxtaposition games of forms and times.
Born out of the collision between a publicity image and a contemporary work, Alain Jacquet’s painting Camouflage Hot Dog Lichtenstein (1963-1998) mixes a art history master work with a consumerist topic in the very kitsch and Pop spirit of Nouveau Réalisme. This work, nearly 6 meters wide, alludes to a painting destroyed during a performance in 1964 at Galerie Iolas. In the same way, Jean Tinguely, with his Meta Kandinsky (1990), goes back to the historical «Méta Reliefs», moving paintings from the 1960s, by setting into motion with small motors, little coloured and damaged elements certainly found in rubbish tips.
Julien Berthier’s Malaxeurs Cinétiques, sculptures made of zinc-plated steel, re-enact the forms of abstract and kinetic art. These paint mixers, unexpected extensions of a drill, become real tools of artistic construction.
Keith Tyson’s Scrape Paintings, a new series initiated in 2013, consist in re-working with paint already existing works: the superposition of topics and techniques from different periods engenders mysterious works in which patterns start interweaving. These interferences build complex surfaces formed by different images forming a connection and sometimes clashing.
No trace of a shock in Pierre Seinturier’s paintings, rather a worrying atmosphere in this falsely orgiastic scene, actually foretelling of a possible danger, of a tragedy, even a sacrifice, to come.
Finally, there must be at the end of this pile-up journey a possibility for repairs. Brazilian artist André Komatsu, makes the poetic proposition of «taping back» framed broken glass slabs with adhesive tape, which, like plasters, creates a new damaged landscape.
With the kind collaboration of Galerie Michel Rein, Hauser & Wirth, Travesia Cuatro, Galleria Continua and Sprüth Magers.