I cast objects in sticky wet tissue paper and when the paper dries, what I peel off carries the form and marks of the original, only it is colourless and weightless. Contrary to traditional sculpture where a mould must be made to create the sculpture, it is the object itself that I use as a mould. This technique enables me not only to capture, almost literally in the sense of “stealing”, all the details of the original object I choose to cast, but also to capture the « space of the object in space » at a certain moment in time.
My work deals with the ideas of impermanence, of presence/absence. It questions the nature of things, of what is reality or perceived as such. I am interested by phenomenology of perception, by the power of what a trace can trigger in our memory or our imagination. The skin-like texture of my sculptures also enables me to explore the concept of liminality, the frontier between inside/outside, full/empty…
My sculptures are like a trace, a vaporous evocation of the original. They make reference to real objects that exist somewhere else or have existed in a different time. They could either be an apparition or in the process of vanishing.
They strive to achieve the impossible, to inhabit the space between spaces, the threshold between inside and outside, presence and absence, visible and invisible, material and immaterial, reality and memory, reality and dream. I’ve been strongly inspired by the notion of the ‘infra thin’, a strange and poetic concept invented and developed by Marcel Duchamp. Impossible to define, infra thin is a kind of immeasurable difference or separation between two seemingly identical things. According to Duchamp, this partition is virtually imperceptible, but absolute. Examples of the infra thin include an object at one time and then one second later, the warmth of a seat that has just been left, or the space between recto and verso…
As I materialise the tiny interstice that lies between the object and the negative space around it, I like to believe that I materialise Marcel Duchamp’s infra thin.
I find fascinating the possibilities offered by my humble medium. I sometimes cover the surface of my tissue paper casts with pencil strokes, creating a three-dimensional drawing, as if I had sculpted the paper with the mark making. In other instances I use photography to further challenge the realness of the object. In that case I destroy the sculpture and the photograph is the final piece. I like the idea that the photograph is like the ‘trace of the trace’. We are left uncertain as to the true nature of the final image, just as we are uncertain as to the true nature of reality.
I have also started developing a new, abstract body of work. I use building timber or found cardboard boxes which I assemble into minimalist abstract forms that I cast in tissue paper and light from the inside with led strips. The light reveals the intriguing skinlike texture of the paper. I am interested by the contrast between the delicacy of the lit paper and the initial function of the timber. In a similar way, the cardboard boxes I assemble are discarded boxes I find by chance, they have had a previous life of their own and were destined to be either destroyed or recycled, and my artistic process transforms them into something new. ‘Monument to Flavin’ is a twist on Dan Flavin’s ‘Monument to Tatlin’ series he made between 1964 and 1982- instead of the neon tubes he used, I create similar forms but with the tubes’ cardboard boxes, which I then cast in tissue paper and light from the inside.