pal project invited the artist Léo Fourdrinier (nominated for the Emerige 2022 prize) to curate a new group exhibition Harmony et Désir.
In the completely reinvented gallery space, works by Curtis Kulig (1981, USA), Yves Scherer (1987, Switzerland) & Aristide Maillol (1861-1944, France), a century older than them are in dialogue. This
discussion between artists of different generations aims to evoke a fascination for the mechanics of the body and the desire to be loved.
By duplicating the muses of our time, Hollywood celebrities and other media-driven protagonists in moments of vulnerability and love, Yves Scherer’s work crystallises the fantasies of identity through paparazzi culture. In an observation on femininity and masculinity that goes beyond gender, Yves examines the result of the collision between two parallel worlds: what we present as our lives (for example, on social media) and what our lives actually look like. The fluctuating demarcation between reality and fantasy thus envisages new forms of identity confrontation. By ultimately constructing a myth rather than a real presence, Yves Scherer composes an iconography of absence in the digital age.
A pioneering artist of modern sculpture in the 20th century, Artiste Maillol, through unity, totality and synthesis, understood what sculpture had to express at the beginning of the last century: the majesty of matter and the immortal splendour of form. Almost exclusively creating female nudes with rounded forms and intense musculature, his work gives priority to a harmonious relationship between curve, volume and surface. Her dense, smooth sculptures are deliberately reminiscent of the block from which they are carved. The standing or seated figures with their neutral or interiorised expression do not completely renounce the content, but weave new relationships with it.
Curtis Kulig’s oil paintings evoke the way the world follows its own rhythm and the challenge of being in tune with it. His large-scale still lifes present a group of different flower species that can be found in the artist’s home state of North Dakota. Lit by stage lights, they cast a strong shadow on the large pastel canvas plains that surround them, reinforcing their fragility. Painted in muted colours, these flowers exude a certain nostalgia and emotion. Captured on the canvas, their slow death is stopped at that precise moment forever, an allusion to the life and movement that emanates from things, even inanimate ones.
Harmony et Désir, to 29th April, pal project, 39 rue de Grenelle, 75007 Paris
Founded in 2020 by Pierre and Alexandre Lorquin, pal project is an emerging art gallery located in the 7th arrondissement. Free and experimental, the program proposes ambitious exhibition projects accompanied by a careful publishing policy, the pal mag, in order to extend and perpetuate the proposals developed. Over the past two years, the gallery has organised more than ten exhibitions, including solo shows (most of them the artists’ first) and group shows, giving carte blanche to young curators for daring projects.