Anthony JP Meyer presents an exhibition of Oceanic art objects that have the distinction of being adorned with signs, glyphs, and graphics - a visual language that shows us the different manners of recording and transmitting the myths and history of the oral cultures of Oceania that did not develop writing.
From the lime spatula of the Massim region with an ancestor figure adorned with spirals and zigzags to the Aborigine Churinga covered with tiny lines, circles or spirals to the Humboldt Bay paddle adorned with an effigy of mythological fish this exhibition connects and exhibits the signs, glyphs and ornaments that make up the various functional and ritualistic languages of the Pacific. The motif can be an ornament indicating a title to property, sometimes it is a clan emblem, a reminder of victory, a proof of initiation, a sign of wealth...
The patterns are multiple as are their combinations and they often still not deciphered by our researchers. Many are subject to the notion of 'copyright' which forbids its reproduction without compensation. This 'copyright' can lead to serious conflicts if the exclusivity of the design is not respected. The pattern we describe simply as decorative is always synonymous with something specific - art is never gratuitous in Oceania. Hence the splendor of the representation, the meticulous workmanship, and the profusion of motifs.
This exhibition is proposed in parallel with Metagraphics: the strange and singular drawings of the artist Serge DUBUC.
Press release courtesy Galerie Meyer - Oceanic & Eskimo Art.