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For the exhibition Sketches of Space, Mudam Luxembourg has invited eight artists to occupy its spaces with projects specifically conceived for the occasion. The installations enhance different approaches to the notion of space: physical intervention to the architecture, game of construction and deconstruction, relating the interior to the exterior of the building, immersive environment, installation disorientating the viewer, response to the institutional context, etc.
Artists collaborating in this group show are Michael Beutler, Simone Decker, Ann Veronica Janssens, Zilvinas Kempinas, Peter Kogler, Vincent Lamouroux, Raffaella Spagna and Andrea Caretto.
Photography by Mudam
For the exhibition Sketches of Space, Mudam Luxembourg has invited eight artists to occupy its spaces with projects specifically conceived for the occasion. Presented in all the galleries devoted to temporary shows as well as in the Grand Hall and the garden-level Foyer (two spaces which epitomize Ieoh Ming Pei's architecture), the installations enhance different approaches to the notion of space: physical intervention to the architecture, game of construction and deconstruction, relating the interior to the exterior of the building, immersive environment, installation disorientating the viewer, response to the institutional context, etc. As the exhibition title suggests, each of these propositions sketches, in its own way, another perception of the museum by redrawing its contours.
German artist Michael Beutler intervenes in two places in the museum. For his installation Flip, presented in one of the ground floor galleries, the walls built after the museum's opening (for the requirements of temporary shows) are cut out and displaced by using steel structures in the shape of semicircles the size of the walls. Reclining flat on the structures, the walls now horizontally divide the space. In counterpoint to Flip, elsewhere in the museum the artist has modified the access to the rooms devoted to the Mudam Collection by erecting (with the help of a lift-up table) walls of plaster and pieces of coloured paper produced in situ.
Faithful to her usual approach which consists of taking the context in which she is to intervene as a starting point, Luxembourg artist Simone Decker has come up with a large-scale installation for the Grand Hall that echoes the previous exhibition, Brave New World - from the perspective of Mudam Collection. A tower, mostly composed of storage cases for artworks from the museum's collection, allows visitors to climb to the heights of the Grand Hall and reach the summit of the atrium. There they may discover a new point of view of the building and the exterior, but also the collection, and more generally, the museum institution.
Numerous artworks by Belgian artist Ann Veronica Janssens explore the limits of perception of time and space using immaterial and evanescent elements such as light, sound or fog. "What interests me", says the artist, "is what escapes; not to freeze it in its escape but rather to experience the elusive." The installation she has imagined for the exhibition takes the form of a large screen crossing the gallery on which are inscribed, by back projection, luminous beams of different colours producing a rapid, almost hypnotic pulsation, liable to provoke retinal persistance in the eye of the viewer.
Lithuanian artist Zilvinas Kempinas has worked for several years with magnetic tapes from analogic recording materials to develop installations which, by extending the research of kinetic art and op art in the 1960s, play with our spatial perception. White Noise is composed of a multitude of magnetic tapes arranged in the space so as to form a screen which, lit from behind and animated by air currents, produces vibration effects that recall the "white noise" that appeared on badly tuned television screens. In his installation Ballroom, visitors are invited to move through an environment featuring red and blue lights, magnetic tapes and reflective surfaces put in motion by suspended ventilators in such a way that spatial bearings are disturbed.
In his video installations, Austrian artist Peter Kogler superimposes onto exhibition spaces virtual spaces in which recurring motifs (ants, rats, abstract shapes, etc.) proliferate and invade the walls, floor and ceiling. His installation for Sketches of Space is composed of a 360° projection, covering all the gallery wallspace, thus presenting a virtual environment in which viewers are invited to immerse themselves. The initial motif in this case is an abstract grid, composed of a mesh of ligns in perpetual movement, in which organic shapes appear and disappear. The space progressively dissolves through the transformations.
The installation by French artist Vincent Lamouroux for the garden-level Foyer takes as a starting point a series of fictional architectural structures described by Edgar Allan Poe in three texts written in 1840, The Domain of Arnheim, Landor's Cottage and The Philosophy of Furniture, that his first French translator, Charles Baudelaire, aimed to bring together in a collection with the evocative title Habitations imaginaires (Imaginary Dwellings). The modules created by Vincent Lamouroux from these descriptions dialogue with Pei's architecture, the style of which is particularly stated in the Foyer.
Since 2002, Italian artists Raffaella Spagna and Andrea Caretto have developed a joint practice that explores the relationships that link Man to the natural environment. Their projects, which are often long term ones, give rise to installations presenting their recent investigations and experiments concerning questions including the transformation of matter, the notion of ecosystems, the process of morphogenesis, the domestication of natural elements and the relationship between wilderness and cultivation. For Sketches of Space, Raffaella Spagna and Andrea Caretto are presenting an installation conceived as a network of "island";, mainly concerning shapes generated in an autonomous way by certain natural elements, be they organic or mineral.
Curators Marie-Noëlle Farcy, Christophe Gallois, Enrico Lunghi, Clément Minighet