En vigie

Series of generative videos, 16/9e, 20’, with sound, on loop
LCD screen, usb key, sound, 2018

En Vigie (The Lookout) is a series of generative videos, which establishes a paradoxical relationship between looking and waiting. A landscape chosen by the sea or a large river is filmed in a fixed shot. The image is then interpreted by a program: each movement is highlighted, like a firefly. All these movements control the movement of a reading head in an orchestral crescendo, which never ceases to vary and whose climax never occurs.

Through this situation of artificial cinematographic suspense, the landscape and the horizon become the object of a shared gaze between human and machine, which questions our physical limits but also the contemporary forms of augmented surveillance – of which the Mediterranean territory is particularly invested.

The series includes three autonomous videos: En Vigie / Strasbourg (2017), En Vigie / Nice and En Vigie / Venise (2018), each lasting approximately 20′, on loop. En Vigie / Nice is presented as part of the solo exhibition Machinal, Villa Henry, Nice, from 25 March to 28 April 2018, accompanied by a catalogue with a text by Céline Flécheux and an interview with Isabelle Pellegrini.

I quit

installation, 2017

Installation (2017)
series of videos found on Youtube (32′), video player and projector, bathroom mirror, headphones, variable dimensions.
In Heterotopia, solo show, Musée d’art et d’histoire de Saint-Denis, 16-07 – 06-08.

The installation projects in the exhibition space a series of video testimonials by people in the US who have left the social networks… and which paradoxically publish it all on Youtube. The abandonment of an experience described as superficial but providing also of a social recognition, and the resulting anxiety provoke a proselytizing discourse of “recovered life”, which evokes both the born again and the collectives of dependent persons, raising the quasi-religious dimensions of these attachments.
 
The device consists of a video projector and a bathroom mirror that projects the image to the ceiling or height of the room, as if their image came from outside our space. The videos are in English. An audio headset allows to listen to them individually.

List of videos URL:
Amy M – Why I quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TgdCdd6ShLA
BrookeAlexia – Deleting my social media https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3Ed9vwhsRU
Cora Handley – Why I Deleted Most of My Social Media And Cut Off Most of My Friends – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-l0ZAd8D4Ao
D-Span – Why I quit social media and what it did! – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljsxyN_rzok
Elessa O’Neil – Why I Really Quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gmAbwTQvWX8
Hans Jordan P – Why I quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=80SVzi7BEnI
Haters Keep Up – Jay Junior – The Time I quit Social Media: Experiment – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P1wlWT_2DNI
Iggy Azalea – Just Quit Social Media! – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DmN3_1n0ZKw
Infinite Stars – Why I Quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iHNhDE8NVvI
Ismael Millan – Why I quit Social Media!!! – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCACOqaWZJ0
Koi Fresco – I’m Leaving Social Media… (Why You Should Too) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hTbN68qvjwI
Lexi Dacrel – I Quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEIy-Z6pqsA
Mischa Janiec – Why I Quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rr6qaThFx4Y
Nikki Sharp – Why I’m Quitting Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7YXOJo-78o
Paullikespasta – Why I Quit Social Media Response – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2_JbfRKXdo
Set Sail – Why I’m quitting Social Media For A Month – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRbGesLcTMU
Sleeping Is For Losers – I quit Social Media – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XukglIWwNk

Ex/if

Series of videos, 2014

Series of 3 videos, HD 16/9 (5’06, 1’43, 0’50), 2014

The EX/IF short videos series were filmed in Japan. They relate situations where the human and urban environment behaves itself like an organism or a machine: the abstract urban flow of Tokyo filmed at night from the top of a tower (#1, Mori), a tennis training with a crowd where each player shouts the description of his action (#2, Service), a panoptic device on a building roof, where the accumulation of CCTV and surveillance sensors seems to be compensated by ambient music (#3, Cool). To account for the spontaneous nature of these phenomena, the videos are rendered without any editing, hence their title which refers to the raw metadata format of digital images.

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Precursion

network installation, 2014

In situ and network installation, 2014

The installation Precursion questions the relationships between democracy, communication and spectacle. A program randomly assembles: video footage made in the surroundings of the exhibition; news feeds in real time; and excerpts of blockbusters’ musics. It generates an infinite video, by combining these three elements. The resulting layering of meanings – sometimes comical, sometimes tragic – highlights a general storytelling shared by TV, reality shows and the blockbusters, that are always centered on the imminence of events or even disasters : the attention economy at work. The work always implies a 2-days session on location to shoot the videos.

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Precursion was created within a residency in digital arts at Maison Populaire (Montreuil, FR) in 2014. Photograph by Emile Oroumov.

Ultima Thulé

series of 4 videos, 2013

Series of 4 videos, 2013
Created with Augmented Window 03 project, Marseille, 2013
Christine Breton, Jean Cristofol, Thierry Fournier and Jean-François Robardet

The Ultima Thulé series consists in four video loops shot in Northern districts of Marseilles: the Viste ravine; Oppidum of Castellas ; the Tour Sainte district and the Lyon and Zoccola streets with the Coptic church and the clandestine flea market. The viewer access to the course of a view drawed by a body in these urban spaces.

The Greek explorer Pytheas, who was based in Marseilles, is the first to have written of “Thule” after his travels between 330 BC and 320 BC to the undiscovered islands of the North beyond Britain. Since the Medieval period, the word refers to the borders of Europe and by extension to the farthest lands we could point out.

Production : Zinc / Friche de la Belle de Mai, with the support and guidance of Dominique Poulain in Höfn. Many thanks to Emil Elias, Father Aghnatyous Ava Mina and the community of the Coptic Church of Marseilles.

Dépli

installation, 2013

Installation, 2013
In dialog with the movie Last Room by Pierre Carniaux

Artist Thierry Fournier teamed up with director Pierre Carniaux to create together a diptych, composed of the interactive artwork on iPad Dépli and the film Last Room, both based on the same footage in Japan. The project proposes a new form of cinematographic writing that engages the viewer’s gaze, status and practice.

The film Last Room combines stories shot in hotel rooms with a collective history surrounding the abandoned island of Gunkanijima. It deals with the relationship between the collective and the intimate, the spoken word and the landscape.

Dépli enables viewers to navigate through the film’s shots and space-time, using a tactile interface. A “playable” cinema, in which the viewer reclaims, through his gestures, part of the cinematographic writing. Developed on iPad, Dépli can be experienced individually at home or collectively, in an exhibition context or in a movie theater – after or before the film. The film’s space-time is treated as a seamless on-going matter in which the spectator navigates, through a tactile interface that involves him physically. This navigation can be felt as the path of a body and a gaze : moving within temporality, sliding or mixing from one shot to another, playing variations of the shot’s speed… Using an interface on tablet, Dépli can be showed and played in movie theaters, exhibitions or at home.

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Publications and prizes

In March 2013, Shellac and Pandore have published a collector box
In 2013, Shellac et Pandore Édition published trilingual special box Last Room / Dépli including the film DVD, the Dépli iPad application and a critical book dedicated to the project, with texts by Philippe Avril, Nicolas Feodoroff, Jean-Pierre Rehm, Anne-Lou Vicente, Pierre Carniaux and Thierry Fournier.

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Last Room / Dépli was selected by Hors Pistes Festival (Centre Pompidou, Paris), ZKM Karksruhe within the “10 best art apps” competition and exhibition in 2013. It received the “special jury prize for interactive cinema” at Festival du Nouveau Cinéma (Montréal Canada) in 2013. See also special issue of Archée online art magazine dedicated to the project.

Programing Olivier Guillerminet and Jonathan Tanant. Production: Lux scène nationale de Valence – Pandore – DICRéAM – Scène nationale d’Evreux Louviers.

Anachrones

series of videos, 2012

Series of videos (2012)
Cloud (2’25”), Mountain (3’36”), Run (2’25”)
Fenêtre augmentée, Prats-de-Mollo (66), 2012 – 2017

Anachrones addresses the relationship between landscape, human and time: not through the manifestation of the natural elements, but at a very large scale, that would evoke the origins of the Earth, as well as events that may happen in a distant future. His figures are a-temporal: they may be fictional, or take place in a parallel universe.

One deploys a mountain of smoke that grows and fades, the second a cloud that rises from the horizon to dissolve in a valley: the third raises two living forms on a mountainside.

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Open Source

installation, 2008-2011

Installation, 2008-2011

The installation is made up of an ellipse-shaped, shallow translucent basin of water, in front of which stands a multitouch interface. It enables the audience to draw a word or make a sketch directly with their hand, as if in the condensation on a window pane. Once a drawing is finished, it appears on the surface of the pool and drifts about with the others. The oldest sketches gradually fade out and make way for new ones.

Usual Suspects

installation, 2011

Interactive installation, 2011
Camera, computer, real time program, projection or screen

A program frames in a red rectangle any moving person or object. The device is extremely sensitive and reacts to any movement: passers-by but also objects, leaves, light reflections, etc. Using a CCTV system rendered absurd by the indiscriminate nature of the machine, the installation stages the fictionalisation of reality shared by the “surveillance society” and blockbuster films: law enforcement as a spectacle.

Limbo

installation, 2011

Installation, 2011
Camera, computer, real time program, IR lights, projection, variable dimensions.

Limbo confronts the audience with spectral shapes that seem to be generated by their own movements, but in a different space and temporality. Blurred and saturated, reversed, delayed and extremely slow, these white shadows look similar to the humans, as they seem irreducibly foreign.

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Entrelacs

interactive video creation for the dance, 2010

Interactive video creation
dance project by Lionel Hoche, 2010

Entrelacs transposes the codes of the fantasy in the field of choreography. Five dancers perform the piece, in dialogue with an interactive video creation. Played on stage, the music is composed mainly of contemporary pieces for organ. A write of duality – ghosts, disappearances, duplication – thus unfolds in a close interlinking of body, space, image and music.

The relationship between the visible and the invisible is the starting point for the creation of interactive video. The forms inherit particularly from the fantasy film, while deploying a larger work on the ambiguities of perception appearances oscillations, temporal shifts, scaling, loss of consistency of the body … These visual phenomena are generated by the dancers’ movements , which are scanned by cameras. Worked exclusively in black and white, using organic aspects of video (vibrations, feedback …), they create a close relationship between gesture, space and temporality. The dancers become in turn the instigators, interlocutors or opponents of the phenomena they face. The interactivity of the image becomes the vector multiple relationships between animate and inanimate, past and present, immanent and absent, living and dead, body and space.

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Sentinel

performance, 2008

Performance, 2008
Juliette Fontaine (video) and Thierry Fournier (stage direction)
Series of performances Outside Lectures (Conferences du dehors)

Two mongooses have been filmed in a zoo while they are watching around, in a succession of swift movements: sentry-like, turning around themselves, standing upright, keeping an eye towards the horizon. Concurrently to this image, the actress walks across the space and among the audience, searching for shelters.

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Photographs by Frédéric Nauczyciel and Alexandre Nollet.

Foreign Office

performance, 2008

Videotape and performance, 2008
With an interview of David Beytelmann – Series of performances Conférences du dehors

David Beytelmann is an historian and philosopher; born in 1973 in Argentina, he lives and works in Paris. A series of video interviews was conducted with him by Thierry Fournier in 2006, for four hours. Two excerpts are shown as part of the performance. His work conjures up the Ubu-esque adventures of his immigration (residence permit, administrative madness, French nationality…), at the same time as it describes the successive diasporas of his family. In his discourse we find an on-going mix of his own personal narrative and an eye on the human and political issues linked with immigration. As a go-between in this filmed work, the actress shares a listening situation with the audience.

Excerpts from the interviews with David Beytelmann:

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Photographs by Frédéric Nauczyciel and Alexandre Nollet.

Residency

performance, 2008

performance, 2008
Series of performances Outside Lectures (Conférences du dehors) with Emmanuelle Lafon.

The circular motion of Febuary 21st 2006, voted by Interior Ministry of France, lays down the law on how to legally arrest conditions for illegal immigrants. Given they’re under arrest only on the outside, it thus legislates on what may be considered as a domicile or not: courtyard, yacht, operating theatre… A videoprojection displays the text of the circular motion like credits at the end of a blockbuster film, with its typical music. The performer faces the projection and repeats the text. Her behavior changes progressively, transforming itself towards an attack of the apparatus. The whole situation points out the warlike fiction suggested by the text, which gradually contaminates the performer’s mind, to the point of an extreme violence.

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Residency starts with the music of an American war film, all brass and drum rolling, that could be Independence Day or Medal of Honor: a ceremony stirring patriotic fictions from their slumber.

The set-up including laptop, amplifier and videoprojector starts up by itself, blasting out the music and projecting an image, a recording of the performance room itself. The performer comes closer, and finds themself faced with a screen, a teleprompter, and so takes the microphone and begins to read the scrolling text. Their face appears as a close-up on the videoprojection, the camera’s point of view is that of a computer filming its user—except that the face is entirely pixellated, like the privacy protection used on TV talk-shows.

The scrolling text also appears on the video projection, superimposed on the face, at the same time as it appears on the teleprompter’s screen. It’s made up of excerpts from the ministerial circular released on February 21st 2006 by the Interior Ministry, detailing the conditions of legal arrest for foreigners in breach of national borders and migration laws, stipulating the steps necessary to effect apprehension “on public streets, at government or police shopfronts, at home or within housing complexes.” (Circular NOR : JUSD0630020C – Crom.06.5/E1-21.02.2006).

Given that most such arrests are to take place outside, this circular is distinct in that it therefore legislates on all spaces considered to be a dwelling or not: apartment, building corridor, pleasure craft (yacht), abode destroyed by fire, operating theater, etc. It’s in this sense that excerpts were selected to underline this distinctness.

The performer thus carries out their reading of the text, in a literally “closed circuit” arrangement, as if the whole set up—composed of computer, microphone, amplifier and projector—composed all of the content, its transformation and its very own fiction. The text is processed like the opening credits to a blockbuster that might have stimulated its author’s imagination; it progressively contaminates the performer to the point of extreme violence. The actress’ voice slowly deepens and lowers as the text lists the possible arrest locations, and the calm balance is broken when, with a monstrous Darth Vader voice, she literally attacks the amplifier with the microphone, the audio feedback creating extremely violent sounds of fragging and explosion. After a short, intense attack, the music leaves the fields of battle to take on characteristics befitting redemption, that telltale register of a war film finale, and the spoken delivery of the circular ends with its two last moments: the statement that an operating theater is an acceptable location of arrest, and the list of administrative recipients for the circular.

Step to step

installation, 2008

Installation, 2008

A video shows a fitness lesson, given by a coach with techno music and costume, facing a low white pedestal in a room. A soon as a visitor puts a foot on the plinth, the speed of the video begins to slow down, until getting completely freezed if the spectator climbs on it. The sound is reacting as well, the voice remaining comprehensible but slowing down until its extreme limit. A general and paradoxal loop is established between the coach and the audience : the “double bind” of an impossible imitation, and the never-resolved transfer of the artwork between the image and the spectator’s body.

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The Life of Things

installation, 2007 – video, 2009

installation (2006) and video (2009)

Created initially as an installation, following the invitation of Technisches Wien Museum for its permanent collection, the video The Life of Things (Das Leben der Dinge) presents interviews of nine people discovering ten objects that have not been indexed, so that the history of those objects is controversed and for what the museum conservators do not know what to do with. Within a museum of science exhibiting a catalogue raisonné of objects and practices, The Life Of Things questions collective representations that objects are provoking when they become part of a collection, while we see nine people portrayed at the moment they are facing curiosity and uncertainty.

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Ce qui nous regarde

installation, 2005

installation, 2005
Emmanuel Berriet and Thierry Fournier

The installation Ce qui nous regarde proposes a space in which the audience leave traces of its passages and movements, asking words and images and being questioned at their turn. In front of a large panoramic screen showing of a large number of words and questions, the presence and the movements of the spectators triggers the apparition of several videos trating the subject of development. The project proposes an hybrid form between cinema and interactive installation.

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Shadow of a doubt

installation, 2003

installation, 2003
Original title : L’Ombre d’un doute

Shadow of a doubt is a “controversy room”: a set of points of view about science, media and politics is confronted with the audience presence and actions. The silhouettes of visitors are projected in real time on the wall, under the form of white “ghosts”; they follow them and reveal videos of interviews, TV archives and philisophical texts read by actors. The relationships and proximity between sequences are constantly modified by the interaction between the visitors in the room. Each person faces two simultaneous collective experiences: one that is talked about in the video sequences, and one that builds up continuously, improvised by the visitors, in the installation area.

People interviewed are activists and association members (François Desriaux, Christophe Gérard, Anne-Laure Morin, Christophe Noisette), philosophers and sociologists (Marc Augé, Bernard-Marie Dupont, François Ewald, Pierre Lascoumes, Isabelle Stengers), a farmer (Hervé Touraquet), civil servants and politicians (Bernard Bachelier, Alain Claëys, Martin Hirsch), and researchers (Olivier Godard, Pierre-Henri Gouyon, Guy Riba, Jacques Testart).

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Texts excerpts that actors read are by Giorgio Agamben (Moyens sans fins), Gilles Châtelet (Vivre et penser comme des porcs), Gilles Deleuze et Félix Guattari (Qu’est-ce que la philosophie ?), Georges Didi-Huberman (Ce que nous voyons, ce qui nous regarde), Bernard Kourilsky et Geneviève Viney (Rapport au premier ministre sur le principe de précaution), Bruno Latour (Du principe de précaution au principe de bon gouvernement), Maurice Merleau-Ponty (L’oeil et l’esprit), Francis Ponge (Le Parti pris des choses), Armand Robin (La Fausse Parole), Clément Rosset (Principes de sagesse et de folie), Isabelle Stengers (Sciences et pouvoirs – la démocratie face à la technoscience), Paul Watzlawick (La Réalité de la réalité : confusion, désinformation, communication), Ludwig Wittgenstein (De la certitude).

Related to: Outside Lectures, The Life of Things, Ce qui nous regarde, Feedbackroom

The Moult of the angel

online dance performance, 2001

Online dance performance, 2001
Isabelle Choiniere and Thierry Fournier

The Moulting Angel is a live and online performance, in which two dancers interact in two distant places, exchanging music and images generated by their movements. The project explores the projections and transformations of the body through a network. Each site performs a mix of both interventions in a constant dialogue. The musical generation is based on a set of microphones, explored in various directions (gestural capture, sound recording, relationship between space and body, etc.).

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The Nibelungen Treasure

installation, with E. Berriet & O. Auber, 2000

Interactive installation, 2000
Olivier Auber, Emmanuel Berriet, Thierry Fournier
Performers: Armelle Orieux (soprano), Laura Gordiani (alto), Jean-François Chiama (tenor), Eric Guillermin (bass).

The Nibelungen Treasure is based on the medieval text of the Nibelungen Lied and the myth it has become: an invisible monument in the german history and in the city of Worms, where the Lied takes place. Visitors entering the installation see the city of Worms from underneath, as if the ground were transparent. Beneath their feet, the bottom of the world stretches into infinity like an impossible chaos. In this space, between the town and the bottom of the world, the imaginary space of the myth develops itself.The visitor moves intuitively in this space, as if he were floating, by means of a circular joystick that he can manipulate in all directions. All the visual and musical elements are generated in real time, in relation to the visitor’s movements on the interface. The spectators influences the content and the form of the score, and the way its parts link and mix. The instrumental gesture of the spectator leads into an experience of time: a continuous circulation in the inner matter and construction of music. The music and soundtrack of the whole museum has been also created within the same project.

Video documentation:

Musical excerpts:






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