Silêncio ! São Paulo (Brasil), Galeria Vermelho

2008 November 25 - January 17.

São Paulo, Galeria Vermelho

Group exhibition.
With Nathalie Brevet & Hughes Rochette, Anne Durez, Joseph Dadoune, Angela Detanico & Rafaël Lain, Marilá Dardot, Maurício Ianês, Manuela Marques, Manon de Boer.
Curator : Audrey Illouz.

Rua Minas Gerais 350
São Paulo, Brazil

There is no such thing as silence. Get thee to an
anechoic chamber and hear there thy nervous
system in operation and hear there thy blood in circulation.
John Cage

The starting point of the exhibition Silêncio! is a song by Caetano Veloso entitled De Palavra em Palavra which was recorded on one of his most avant-garde albums : Araça Azul (1972). This text was written by Veloso after he came back from his exile in London. Dedicated to Augusto de Campos, it draws explicit references to concrete poetry. This piece uses typographical layouts, puns, palindromes, phonic mirrors and other visual and sound experiments and reaches its climax in a scream. This scream, uttered in the context of a dictatorship, blows full contradiction as a gap appears between the speech (the word txt_quote_single_opensilênciotxt_quote_single_close) and the action (the scream).

The exhibition focuses on scream and its status within language: from a sound which is not yet an articulated word, from a primal expression, to a dramaturgy of speech. While the most famous representation of scream in the pictorial field is, no doubt, Edvard Munch’s eponymous work, it sets back the viewer into frightening muteness. Here, the impact of the image appears where the sound itself is absent.

Through an understanding of the scream as a vector between body and language, the aim of this exhibition is to work around forms of resistance that are linked to a physical, performative and linguistic experience such as shouting the word txt_quote_single_opensilencetxt_quote_single_close. The relationship between words and images may then be tackled differently.

As such, this project mingles several approaches. The physical approach was inspired by Antonin Artaud’s txt_quote_single_openxylophenic bodytxt_quote_single_close -the idea of a to and fro between orality and writing, between written form and sonority, between the body stigmata and the shape of the voice – and it was nurtured by a core work, absent from the exhibition but nevertheless its keystone: Manon de Boer’s Resonating Surfaces (2005).

Through the portrayal of the Brazilian psychoanalyst Suely Rolnik who fled the dictatorship after she was imprisoned, this work evocates what can lie txt_quote_single_openencapsulatedtxt_quote_single_close in the speech and bursts out through the voice. It evocates the vibration of a vital energy where lies the resistance to the violence of the political power.

The exhibition evolves from the body, taken as a sensitive surface, where singing slowly yields to the primal scream in Joseph Dadoune’s Score N°1 for Three Moments of Origin (First Circle) to the primal fears that are triggered by Mauricio Ianêstxt_quote_single_close installation that traps the viewer, through the voyeuristic staging of the visitor who is turned into an unwilling accomplice of a fictional incident with Laurent Fiévet (Happy Scream, 2006)

At this point, sound and mute experiences are actually the two faces of a same coin: from the body struggling with the natural elements in Anne Durez’s Donnant (2006), to the body entangled within a self-centered exercise -placing one’s breath during a theater rehearsal in Manuela Marquestxt_quote_single_close Situation 3 (2005).

These mute experiences draw us towards more purely linguistic ones, such as the ordeal of silence and the attempt to record it through language in Marilá Dardot’s Sob Neblina (2004-2008) or the failure of communication at work in Manon de Boer’s Switch (1998) where the surface and the meaning of the language clash.

We move from a concealed meaning to a forbidden meaning with Nathalie Brevet_Hughes Rochette’s series Somebody Says (2008). Other puns, other linguistic new interpretations show up in Angela Detanico & Rafael Lain’s animation White Noise (2006). The phrase txt_quote_single_openwhite noisetxt_quote_single_close, which refers to the light spectrum, draws into a clash two registers of language: one related to sound and the other to the image. Another influence of concrete poetry is revealed in Mauricio Ianês des-pe-nha-dei-ro (2008) sound poem which is reminiscent of the txt_quote_single_openxylophenic bodytxt_quote_single_close.

Each of the works mentioned above is shown in echo of other works by each artist -the latter having been especially created for the purpose of this exhibition.

Following the verbivocovisual poem by Caetano Veloso, the exhibition is built upon resumptions, repetitions, new interpretations; it is built upon plays with mirrors which can be distorting.

The scream could recede for yet unknown data. These are anthropophagic attempts, geographically unbound.

Shown in this exhibition

Paris, Institut finlandais


Copyright © 2016 Laurent Fiévet