Saint-Denis Art and History Museum
Invited by Synesthésie, art and research center
June 16th to August 7th, 2017
The Synesthésie art center presents a personal exhibition of Thierry Fournier’s work at the Saint-Denis Art and History Museum. For Heterotopia, Thierry Fournier uses the entire space of the museum’s chapel, occupying it with a large-scale apparatus that combines a networked installation and a number of new pieces.
Our experience of identity and alterity – in a broad sense – has been largely redefined as a result of our permanent exposure on the web and of our coexistence with entities that challenge the boundaries of human beings. Thierry Fournier explores these issues in a speculative manner, through a series of narratives that engage with each other.
The subjects, bodies and objects presented in this exhibition cover multiple statuses: desires expressed on the Internet are captured in real time and read by synthesized voices that generate an endless landscape (Ecotone); an apparatus projects into the space testimonials of people who have left social networks (I quit); a program queries whether its viewers are human (Just in case); smart-phones produce absurd poems (Oracles); a neon sign announces that it wishes to be concealed (Hide me); an installation composes an hybrid organism (Nude); hands modified by their gestures on interfaces (Futur instant)…
Through this set of works, the exhibition suggests a parallel space that is both utopian and dystopian, to which we are permanently confronted, and whose rules have already altered reality. Up against systems in which their imitation or replacement has never presented such a significant challenge, human beings are permanently interacting with the trail they leave behind on the network, with their images, simulacra or extensions.
In this space that was once a convent and subsequently served as a magistrate’s court, the reference to Michel Foucault in the exhibition’s title suggests that the counter-spaces adjoining several realities and experiences no longer appear exclusively in physical spaces: they also develop in the network, in individuals, and in bodies.
A catalogue published by Pandore Editions includes a text by Ingrid Luquet-Gad and an interview with exchanges with J. Emil Sennewald.