New acquisitions: Lola Gonzàlez, Vivien Roubaud

Two young artists have joined the new acquisitions of les Abattoirs: Lola Gonzàlez, who has been developing an artistic work at the crossroads of cinema and performance for several years, and Vivien Roubaud, an artist-scientist, both inventor and handyman.

Lola Gonzàlez

Lola Gonzàlez (born in Angoulême in 1998) is a young French artist who has been developing artistic work for several years at the crossroads of film and performance. Rapidly receiving recognition on the French scene, including winning the 2016 Prix Meurice, she has created a body of work made up of filmic stories combining realism, idealism, and the uncanny. The coherency of her work emerged from the recurrence of falsely familiar or hostile locations (a family home or the seaside of Brittany). Similarly, in her films, the actors that play her characters are always identical. This troupe is made up of her family and friends. Her work is thus presented as the result of a collective process in which her role is defined more as that of the witness, or transcriber of life, or of the troupe’s deliriums. Since 2013, her films have teleported us into an uncertain world, at the limits of nostalgia and oblivion, documentary and utopia.

For the first time, Les Abattoirs, Musée - Frac Occitanie Toulouse presents the video installation Rappelle-toi de la couleur des fraises [Remember the Colour of Strawberries], an acquisition of one of the most recent creations by the artist, which will enable us to discover the grandiloquence of landscapes and the mystery of stories that have inspired her films.

This year, Les Abattoirs acquired the film Rappelle-toi de la couleur des fraises[Remember the Colour of Strawberries], which questions loss of vision through the rescue of a young couple. The film opens on a wide shot of a maritime landscape whose immensity is only comprehensible when three figures wander into the frame. It is only at that moment that the spectator discovers that the two dots at the centre of the frame are in fact our future heroes. On the ground, completely drenched, these two almost inanimate bodies are potentially the survivors of a shipwreck and are picked up by the three extras. Gradually, through a clever arrangement of subjective shots, we learn that the eyesight of these two characters has been affected. Will we get to know why? Have they been saved or are they being held captive? The work of Lola Gonzalez has recently been exhibited in France and abroad (for instance, solo presentations at the Institut d'Art Contemporain de Villeurbanne and the CREDAC). Preparing her latest film, she has recently been in residence at the FLAX Residency in Los Angeles.

Vivien Roubaud

A young French artist, Vivien Roubaud (born in 1986) is an artist-scientist, both an inventor and a DIY enthusiast. He presents at Les Abattoirs this series of “inflatables” – a complete experience that is both visual and audio. Appropriating objects that he gathers from refuse centres or directly from the street, he explores the forms and techniques of mechanical production. Chandeliers, cables, plumbing pipes, old printers, or bandsaws are all materials that he places at the heart of his work. These ruins of the modern world are not just recuperated goods, but an examination of the cycle of creation and recycling. His other works thus explore the possibilities of prolonging or freezing time, as with his stalactite works whose final forms, drop by drop, will take hundreds of years.

Les Abattoirs presents a series of Gonflables [Inflatables] (2015). These three organic, monumental sculptures, surprisingly alive and bright, will be installed in the Picasso room. The museum will have the pleasure of revealing one of its new acquisitions to the public.

The installation Gonflables, contrepoids, transmission scooter électrique, lustres à pampilles, collecteur tournant, chaine de moto, vingt-quatre volts [Inflatable, counterweight, electric scooter transmission, crystal chandelier, rotating torque transducer, motorbike chain, twenty-four volts] takes the form of inflatable spheres of different dimensions. While the bubbles evoke a childhood game or the industrial productions of the 1960s, the crystal chandelier placed inside it, set off by an electric scooter motor, rotates indefinitely. Subverted from its function, the object produces a new energy, as well as original forms, sketched by the movement of the lights in the air. The sound created by the movement of the crystal beads is also amplified by that caused by their contact with the plastic sphere. Transformed by an overall movement, the parts of this old chandelier eventually cause one another to break. Endowed with a movement similar to breathing, the sculptures occasionally take on a frenetic pace. Creating systems with absurd and repetitive movements, the artist gives rise to an apparatus presenting organic characteristics. In a world in which machines are doomed to programmed obsolescence, the artist thus breathes new life into them. Laureate of the 2014 Révélations EMERIGE Prize, he lives and works in Brussels. The work of Vivien Roubaud has notably been exhibited at the Palais de Tokyo or, more recently, at the MAMAC de Nice. This is the first time his work has entered a French public collection.