Pact, Paris

Weird and gay, noisy and silent, making us laugh, annoyed or forcing us to reflect, the works presented by Manuel Scano Larrazàbal, Dorian Gaudin, Martin Kersels and Zoe Barcza extend, without knowing or realising, the Dada adventure, while still possessing two common features: machine and thought.

While Martin Kersels gradually deconstructs a domestic interior, Zoe Barcza questions the fertilisation industry; Dorian Gaudin undertakes constructions like tectonic plates, and Manuel Scano Larrazàbal offers an ephemeral installation the opportunity to create a work in Marseille. These works, reflections of their time, blur all understandings between the work of the artist, the work as engineer and the profane work. These different forms of artistic expression, some ironical, others dissenting, or simply poetical, all translate current questionings: is society aware of its self-destructiveness and its fragility? Have human beings forgotten the brevity of their own existence and their ineluctable fate? Will Man be replaced by the machine?

While Manuel Scano Larrazàbal’s fragile and ephemeral drawing machine – which could be called a Meta-Tinguely – tries with delicacy and grace, stroke after stroke, to elaborate a work on paper, Martin Kersels’ video shows a fully furnished room – adorned with all the modern habitat’s paraphernalia – turning in circles on itself, inexorably going, with the regularity of a metronome, towards self-destruction. Following the same tempo, the first is a machine that creates, the second a machine that destroys; both balance and ironically answer each other through their antagonistic actions.

Simultaneously, Dorian Gaudin confronts the machine to its utility, giving it, through his installations, a movement making it able to restlessly look for – with or without free will – the function for which it was created, or the meaning it represents. Similar to the tectonic plates confronting each other and creating mountains through their collision, the wall sculptures presented at ART-O-RAMA are the result of a space restriction imposed by the artist on the material which then contorts itself, thus forming an imaginary and colourful landscape possessing its own language.

Zoe Barcza presents a metallic shelf, a mundane display unit or a storage accessory, on which a few almost fossilised sperms are flaunting themselves while waiting to be selected, the way we would choose to adopt an abandoned dog in an animal shelter or an orphan on a catalogue. In a humorous way, the artist mocks the human reproduction (and decline) machine, while questioning the dangers of a new fertilisation business where man and woman don’t need to meet anymore, nor does the sperm need to travel through the labyrinth-like feminine den to give life.

Terrorists, provocative, iconoclasts, refusing any ideological, moral, or artistic constraints, these works extol spontaneity and attempt, through the energy they release, to become expressive tools for investigation.