artist / participant
Opening: Thursday, 13 March, 7:30 pm
Guillaume Leblon (b. 1971, Lille, France) creates site-specific installations, sculptures and films. His simple interventions cause tensions that affect our visual perception. In STUK Leblon creates new works in which he explores opposites such as movement and standstill, gravity and weightlessness.
Parallel to the exhibition Leblon, together with Thomas Boutoux, will create the dialogue Suite, which will be performed on the opening night of the exhibition (13 March) and on 16 April in the theatre of STUK. Three young male characters engage in a conversation in which words and sounds intermingle. The public is invited to learn again how to hear and listen.
Though Leblon's visual language and his interventions often seem minimal, the artist succeeds in activating spaces and loading them with various meanings. The objects present seem enigmas that comprise heterogeneous references. On the one hand, Leblon departs from the surrounding space, from its qualities and history, which he undermines through small shifts. On the other hand, he introduces primary elements or natural phenomena, such as gravity, air, smoke or water. He thus charges certain materials and situations that at first sight seem rather minimal with metaphorical meanings. Through his interventions, Leblon visualises both the invisible aspect of (natural) phenomena and their destructive aspects or those qualities that escape control. Often he links the outside world with the interior spaces of the exhibition, with natural elements and the everyday appearance of the artificial context.
The passing of time and the remembrance of things past are always inherently present. The presentations comprise objects that contain traces of history, references to the past or future. Familiar object metamorphose and reappear embodied in new materials or in configurations that allow us to view them from a new perspective. In the installation Four Ladders in STUK, the focus is on the sails of an old windmill. The wooden sail structures turn into a sculptural element in the exhibition room, yet they remain linked to the primordial force of nature they visualise in the outside world, where they are exposed to the elements. It is as if the sails become ladders that cleave the interior space, while other elements are presented independently in the space. The traditional windmill, which is now almost extinct (the ones that remain bearing witness to a past long gone) reminds us of the battle Don Quixote fought. The force of the mill can also be related to labour or the pro duction of goods. In this installation, Leblon also plays with the paradoxical relation between construction and destruction, between the presentation and revaluation of the sails of the windmill on the occasion of an exhibition and the disappearance of the object as such. As in other works Leblon thus also raises questions about the status of the work of art and the link with reality.
Guillaume Leblon finished his studies in 1997 at the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Lyon. In 1999-2000 he resided at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam. His work has been on view at various solo exhibitions such as the FRAC Bourgogne (Dyon), W139 (Amsterdam) or the Kunstverein in Düsseldorf. His works is represented and regularly shown by his galleries Jocelyn Wolff (Paris) and ProjecteSD (Barcelona). At the moment a solo exhibition by Guillaume Leblon is on view at the Domaine de Kerguéhennec, later this year a show at Culturgest in Porto and the CGAC in Santiago de Compostella will follow. On 17 April Leblon will take part in the project Curating the Library in deSingel, Antwerp.
This exhibition is supported by CULTURESFRANCE.
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