Grégoire Alexandre // Histoires Paralléles

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Image courtesy © Grégoire Alexandre

Each year, as a part of its photographic programme, the villa Noailles commissions a project from a chosen artist. Following on from Joël Tettamanti (2004), Olivier Amsellem (2005), Erwan Frotin (2007), Charles Fréger (2008), and Cyrille Weiner (2009), the villa Noailles will exhibit from the 30th of October 2011 until the 15th of January 2012, the fruits of a new photographic series commissioned from Grégoire Alexandre. Grégoire Alexandre presents Histoires parallèles, the product of a year’s residency at the villa Noailles.

Grégoire Alexandre was born in 1972, in Rouen. Following his academic studies in cinematography, he enrolled in the École Nationale de la Photographie in Arles, from which he graduated in 1995. He has worked in Paris since 1995. His approach is founded essentially upon commissioned photographic works within which he strives to explore their constraints and to question their limits. His predilection for eclecticism results in his undertaking various projects, in fashion, still life, portraits, album art, and advertising work. His aim is to develop a stylised universe which rests upon a playful study of concepts. Though his work is mainly exhibited in magazines and various media supports, he is also regularly the subject of exhibitions in both France and abroad.

"It is not commonplace for the notion of an artistic residency to be as pertinent as it is at the villa Noailles. When Jean-Pierre Blanc offered me an invitation to undertake a “residency” at the villa, I quickly realised the extent to which this notion of residency is intimately incorporated within the origins of the villa itself.Marie-Laure and Charles de Noailles desired for this home to be “functional”, in order to welcome their friends – who for the most part were artists – so that they may visit for an evening, a weekend, or a glorious and sun-filled sojourn.

It was a multi-faceted place, a crossroads for artists, yet also a space for recreation, where the expression of modernity was transferred not only through innovative and audacious experiments, but also through the mastery and fulfilment of the physical body. It was this blending of energies, the surrealist character of these renowned holiday-makers, and the playful and sporty aspect of their stay, which was the source for my study.

I too wished to invite friends, artists, to join me, for the duration of a weekend, to participate in the rewriting of a history which leans upon the heritage of the Noailles and upon the villa itself.
We took free inspiration from the villa’s rich and contrasting past, from documents which recount the creative and recreational visits of these guests, in order to produce a series of images which act like a deforming mirror, diverting the facts in an open and instinctive manner.All of this was assembled in a parallel, polymorphous, and disordered narrative.

The series unfolds through narrations and digressions, interventions and diversions, it has neither a beginning nor an end. It is of the order of dreams, wherein reside spectres and shadows of the possible and the improbable.Visions of Maroussia Rebecq, Jean-Michel Bertin, Andji Dinh Van, Marion Jolivet, the Hyères synchronised swimming team, Christophe Brunnquell, Kiluanji Wolf, and Laurent Mathieu have taken possession of this space".- Grégoire Alexandre

The exhibition will be open from October 30 2011 to January 15 2012.
Communauté d’agglomération Toulon Provence Méditerranée
Montée Noailles
83400 Hyères


Villa Noailles

Posted by George Chronopoulos
Posted on September 26th, 2011
in Art & Grégoire Alexandre