Organon and the audience perception,
Benoît Maire & Falke Pisano
The Snake - 20/10/2014 - 26/10/2014
Organon is an artwork created by Falke Pisano et Benoît Maire in 2008 and
showed for the first time at the Croy Nielsen’s gallery. It’s one of a series of collaboration between the two artists. It has been show after at the Grazer Kunstverein in Graz (Austria) in 2009. This time with a new collaborative film called The Wave.
The artwork is a performed sculpture placed on six rolling tables that can be moved. Arranged on the tables there are a series of abstract objects. Some texts wrote by the artists are placed on the wall like a kind of description of the sculpture set up.
Organon will be showed for the first time in France and for this occasion we thought to an exceptional and unique place: The Snake.
The Snake is a loft created by the architect François Roche in 2003 commissioned by a private collector. It’s a house in the form of snake conceived to live with artworks. The same lighting, day and night, make you lose the notion of time.
I saw your work at an art fair where I was also presenting some works in 2006. I used to work as an assistant at the gallery, Ellen de Bruijne Projects in Amsterdam, that was showing my work and I was still curating a small programme there, together with Charlotte Moth. So we invited Benoît to exhibit something and Benoît and me started to correspond. Two years later we were invited by Croy Nielsen, the gallery in Berlin, to make a work together. We decided to work on the spot, to come to the space and to continue the discussions we were having by email, collect some materials, and see what happens.
The idea was to have a sculpture that exists always in the present. It is composed of different sculptural fragments that are re-arranged during the course of the exhibition by a performer. To do so the performer follows a text, a score, written by both of us and printed on posters that have been hung on the wall with nails.
The sculpture consisted of six irregularly formed tables on wheels that could be moved through the space and a collection of materials and objects on it. We worked on most of the materials on the table, but not to an extent that they became proper sculptures. There lingered in between material and sculptural gestures. During the installation, when we had collected the materials we began to manipulate the objects on the tables for each other. While Benoît would manipulate the objects I would write down observations, ideas, things that came to mind, and then we would exchange positions; I would do this manipulation and Benoît would write. Later we rewrote the text that we generated in this way and developed it into a script.
So, you have performers work with the objects during the show, does this happen throughout the whole show?
4-5 times during an exhibition. We never really explained the relation between the text on the wall and the tables to the performers. It was something to be developed by the person for her- or himself.
What is the text about?
The text is a compilation of possible movement of some sculptural elements.
It’s really a mix of very material and more conceptual indications. As if it is a score for a possible use of the sculpture.
Why do you work with a performer, instead of leaving it up to the spectator?
Because you have to practice with us before.
We chose to work with one person per exhibition, who repeats the re-ordering of the sculpture throughout the exhibition, and dedicates her time and concentration to do it. It was not our intention for it to be a game for all.
Is that the text in the book? You spoke amongst other things about a story unfolding in a score?
We considered it to be a combined story of the score on the wall and the objects on the table in the space. The table functioned as an empty space, we thought about a desert, where the objects were brought into by movement. They were to be placed with an intention, somehow generated by the score. What I liked about this piece is that it never becomes a finished argument or narrative, it does not become complete. It oscillates very much between physical and mental abstraction. It could never materialize in one specific direction.
Is it important that it is on wheels?
Yes, so that also the tables can be moved. We showed it in another place: at the Grazer Kunstverein à Graz (Austria), with a film that we did together named The Wave.
Extract from an interview-conversation between Benoît Maire and Falke Pisano during the seminary “Les Contemporains, littérature, arts visuels, théorie” that has been enterely published in Collaboratives Works, Éditions Manucius, 2014.