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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Lucy, Darwin and Me / photos of the show

The first room - Lucy

And so it is done! I really like the fact that I could pretty much do whatever I wanted inside the gallery and that I had no commercial pressure to sell anything. In fact there is not a lot of items for sale in the show: only the series of small inks on paper. Otherwise things will either disappear at the end of the show or I will keep them, like the personal objects in the display case.

The window from inside the gallery

From outside the gallery

Some things I wanted to do, like using decals, are pretty expensive if you do not own the machine. Recently, I was talking to a friend artist and she was saying "we leave in this country where so many amazing techniques exist and we cannot use them because they are too expensive." Of course we are not obliged to use all those new machines and materials to make a good work but experiencing new things has always been something I was interested in, even if I enjoy very much "making things with what I have." For example, for this show I wanted to face-mount the prints in the second room with Plexiglas and not having any kind of frame. But after I got the estimates I decided that I had to go back to earth and make something really less expensive. And different. But that's ok.

I love the fact that I worked for the very special space of Art Produce Gallery. I wanted something viewable from the sidewalk, something people could enjoy even if the gallery is closed. I wanted to play with the transparency of the window, which matches the length of the wall.

I wanted people to enjoy details when they are inside and so there is this series of very small inks. But nothing is really hanged at a "normal" height. The first day someone made one of the inks hanged very low on the wall fall on the floor, I think it will happen again and I am fine with it. It is unusual to have to pay attention to things hanged very low - or very high!

Detail of the series "Biodiversity", 2009,
inks on paper mounted on wood panels

There is also the series of tiny square photos on the mural. They are a light bridge between then (Mauritania 1975) and now (my attachment for the deserts, and the fact that with my family today, we spend time in the desert together).

I wanted to put together different medium, each of them being a part of the big picture. Decals, mural, photos, inks, mini-photos, mini-book, video and display case with objects... I enjoyed very much finding a way to make them flow together. Although it was sometimes a little bit overwhelming trying not to forget anything (I made lists...), the making of was really interesting.

"Mauritania, Sahara Desert, between 1972 and 1975"
- a series of 7 photos
taken by my parents,
Denise and Gerard Guieu

Text which goes with the series:
Areas of Nouakchott, Atar, Akjoujt, Amokjar, Chinguetti and Ouadane.
photos by my mother and my father, Denise and Gerard Guieu

Between 1972 and 1975 I lived in Dakar, Senegal, with my family. My father was a geologist and my mother was a biologist. Each vacation, we would explore some place, either in Senegal or in Mauritania, which shares a border with Senegal.

Taking the old Land Rover loaded with water, gas and food (mostly oranges, pasta, rice and tomato sauce - all heat resistant), we would go to the Saharan desert, discovering amazing landscapes scorched by the sun, meeting Tuareg people and their salt caravans, watching the jackals, marveling at the ancient human artifacts laying on the ground, stopping in remote oasis, drinking mint tea and sleeping under the stars.

This is a tribute to the things I discovered with my parents, the discussions we had about the history of Earth --which, in the Saharan desert was unfolding under our eyes -- the continental drift, the origins of humanity and biodiversity.

"Artifacts": video and display case

My father's field notebook
. The video was made
in Anza Borrego Desert State Park, California.

The windows outside the gallery
(photo, video, kettle and wood)
(photo Janine Free)

Lucy, Darwin and Me

Art Produce Gallery

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