XinHua Art Service proposes an open-air exhibition concept.
I took this opportunity to present one of my concept names Identified Design.
The exhibition sets in 4 windows along XinHua road and DingXi road in Shanghai.
My exhibition occurred from 15th January to 10th February, 2022.
An Art promenade has been organized on Saturday 22nd January to present my work to the public.
A second promenade has been organized for La Ruche association (association of French women of Shanghai) on 27th January.
THE EXHIBITION CONTINUES ONLINE
Exhibition: IDENTIFIED DESIGN
Place: Xin Hua Art Service
XinHua Art Service proposes an open-air exhibition concept.
Here is the first window with the first installation.
This concept names IDENTIFIED DESIGN.
I take a picture and I cover everything designed by human in red and white stripes.
I keep all natural elements in black and white.
It's a way to identify what is artificial, to make a balance between artifice and natural.
To introduce myself,
I grew up in a cultural environment. I graduated in Design.
I have worked for LANCEL as a global designer and head of all technical product design and development for 10 years
I have now been living in Shanghai for 5 years where I was the director of Nantes Design School branch.
It closed recently due to the pandemic situation.
I have the chance to be able to go regularly to museums.
Especially the Centre Georges Pompidou that became my second home when I was living in Paris.
I have heard about Daniel Buren, Sol Lewitt,
Bridget Riley or Frank Stella.
They are part of my art culture for rhythm and structure of space.
They are also from a time of art history that is not anymore connected directly with today's needs and researches.
Their concept is different from mine, they are not doing identification.
Yayoi Kusama play with dots to give a hypnotic sensation, to submerge the viewer in a psychedelic feeling.
Gérard Fromanger paints people and trees to identify the soul, to make happiness appear.
Manuel Merida uses stripes to question viewers about a world in construction.
Felice Varini plays with graphic system to produce illusion and to make something else than the original thing appear.
Here is the second board.
With this opportunity to exhibit my project with XinHua Art Service, I decided to design something specific to the windows.
I asked myself how to make something more impactful to question people, to have an interaction in the street with viewers through Art. Since the beginning, I chose to make it full frame.
I take photographs with trees, plants, building, street and also people who interact with their environment.
Integrating the window frame in the photography gives this abyss effect. The viewer can feel to be part of the project.
The real environment around us can be considered as part of the installation, part of the question.
These red and white stripes is one of my concepts.
Here is a construction game, kind of the first education system for kids to integrate them in the design process.
With this game, we can design whatever we want, it will always be covered by stripes.
I also make gold elements to question about space materialization. Here are some historical Chinese photographs. It's made to identify the air, what we usually not consider in our observation. And in gold to give a value to this emptiness. Maybe the dream of our society.
Many of my concepts are made to make the viewer change temporarily his consideration, his point of view.
The Totem or Contemporary Cairn is a symbol of initiative.
When we find a new way on the land, we build some Cairn.
The Cairn is made of stones found on site. In my contemporary way of life, most of the time I'm in an artificial environment.
To mark a new initiative, a start of a new project, a new study or a discovery, I build a Cairn with objects found on site.
I like this principle of fragility, of balance, an ephemeral creation. The fact that objects are not made to be assembled in order to generate creativity.
I have this "Butterfly effect" project where I assemble pictures, to generate some new stories.
I like these shapes or color association.
I'm working on a Circular art project. To recycle my paper, to produce some blocs where I can draw or paint.
I'm experimenting some cyanoprint photography and laser cutting to design some clean shapes made of scraped projects.
I have a vernacular photography quest. Many people wait to have an empty place to take picture.
Now I look for people on my photography. I try to identify basic common actions to share how is China today with my network.
Something different than what is shared on media.
The 3rd board locates in a corner, facing to potential viewers.
It's the first one in the promenade that is oriented as a road sign. Facing to passers-by.
Here is the question of identification.
Nowadays, the question of identification is permanent. Cameras, payments, ID cards, ...
Some artists dedicate their research on hacking the identification.
Stripes are known for identification. We see them every day.
Red stripes are also a common system to identify a danger.
But already be identified, is it still a danger? We can focus on the beauty behind.
Stripes during the European middle ages was used to identify prostitutes, lepers and marginals. It's only since the XVIth century that stripes have been used by the nobles as graphic fabrics. It's now totally accepted in trends. It has been used by Sonia Rykiel or Jean Paul Gaultier. It's also part of some iconic movies as "Who are you, Polly Maggoo?" (William Klein).
In art history, the Gustave Courbet Painting, "A burial in Ornans", is usually used to explain painting structure, representation and identification.
"The milkmaid", by Johannes Vermeer, let us know more about XVIIth century habits. We can see some details even on ceramics in the background.
Portraits as these ones of Louis XIV or Kangxi, contemporary king and emperor, use art for representation and identification. From France to China.
Another example with the famous "The coronation of Napoléon" by Jacques Louis David.
In contemporary art, there is still representation and identification.
On top left, it's a 2021 painting made by 20 years old Chinese student from Beijing. We can feel the inspiration of western painting construction.
Daniel Spoerri, by gluing the end of a eating time;
Yves Klein by representing women by women;
Fabrice Hybert, by making the 1m cube of YSL lipstick or representing trees with information;
Robert Rauschenberg, by mixing pictures to represent a time in the history.
They are all including data in their representation. They use art as a data representation.
Since the exhibition is in the street, the place is not considered by people as a place where we can see art.
Many people think it's an advertisement, asking what is the brand? What is the product?
This exhibition and the XinHua Art Service is also here to ask about the interaction between Art and people.
As a random walker in the street, we are maybe automatically part of the XinHua Art Service installation, even if we don't look at windows.
Brands include consumers in the production process.
Here in the Starbucks reserve of Shanghai, we can take coffee and watch their production line.
We have more and more inclusive experience where you can see kitchens of restaurants, not only for food safety.
More and more brands have thought to offer some custom concepts, with more or less success.
Even you are not a designer, you are part of the design process.
Even if you don't feel acting in this design process, you are being involved in the development, illustrated here with the picture of Lujiazui in 1990.
Here are some other IDENTIFIED DESIGN projects I did.
Few years ago, I was focusing on historical pictures, where some happy people were not considering yet the impact of their action.
Here is the pilot of Enola Gay plane who shoot the first atomic bomb.
I did some experimentations on Vincent van Gogh paintings.
I covered a Santana Car as a symbol of China development.
I made some Paris post card. We choose post cards for most of time representing some artificial design.
We share with our friends and family the fact that humans have impact on the environment.
I recently made some projects of IDENTIFIED DESIGN with some traditional Chinese Art.
Traditional Chinese painting has this question of balance between human and nature.
On this Literate stone, human impact has been hand-curved, I cover it with red and white stripes to make the identification.
On the bas relief representing the Silk road, it's interesting to see how much identified design take a big part of the stone, compared to Chinese paintings. This inform about the profusion of the silk road design.
Here is the end of our promenade.
My project is not to denounce or critic design or production.
I question myself about my design impact. Doing this artwork offer a tool to observe with another approach.
As a designer, I think it is important to do this personal research to provide some inputs to my design projects.
As Robert Filliou and Fluxus talk about the permanent creation, I believe in the permanent research.
January 22nd, 2022