A l’interieur cet été, Baptiste Rabichon’s second intervention at the Paris-Beijing Gallery, is intended as the deployment of Dame de Cœur, presented in the PBProject room in March 2018.
If the first exhibition was already referring to Lewis Carroll’s heroine, A l’interieur cet été is also a clins d’oeil to the character of Alice, her name being concealed somewhere in the title.
Two new works open the exhibition. The first one, Netflix, whose title is of an astonishing contemporaneity, represents an interior scene; two bodies lying on the bed, one represents the artist and the other, Alice, her gaze resting on a tablet. The apparent simplicity of these fragments of life is evoked by the artist in a recent interview with Manon Klein who saw in his work a correspondence with the notion of the infra-ordinary of novelist Georges Perec: «It’s not because things are part of our everyday life that they are banal, it is our eyes that slips on them, with a banal indi erence. Inevitable, however, otherwise we would be constantly stunned.» .
It’s through the lens of his smartphone that Baptiste Rabichon collects these moments of daily life. Like sketches of a painter, these images structure his narrative where digital and analogue manipulation, collection and composition are mingled. Successive experimentations will give birth to a unique image, hybrid, born from the union of distinct temporalities.
The second work, the warholian diptych Le Lunettier, reveals a double display stand for spectacles. Like a visual swing to the outside, the city and his shop windows, but also an invitation to look through these glasses; the work is a bridge between Netflix’s realism and the dreamlike atmosphere of the series 17ème.
Walking through the works form the series 17ème – main corpus of the exhibition- we found Alice’s figure again. Her life-size silhouette appears like an opaline spectrum combined to an extravagant flora. The floral motifs that characterize this series are created from real flowers picked by the artist during his walks, sometimes mixed with scans, then projected onto the photosensitive paper. The sunlight of the city gardens shines in and the intimacy of the photo lab where the artist tries to combine imprint and representation. Body and objects are marked by a dichotomy between darkness and light, interior and exterior, which also translates two essential phases of his work: the isolation of the darkroom and the a many bright places where the artist for collect his visual notes translating the correlations between chemistry and the computer, between the life of the artist and his laboratory.
Working in absolute darkness involves a great deal of concentration but also accepting that the hazards of chance are part of the composition process. It is undoubtedly the collision between control and accident that gives these works their peculiar chimerical appearance.