For her inaugural New York exhibition, Laure Prouvost presents an immersive installation. The gallery space will be transformed into a subterranean travel agency, (DEEP TRAVEL Ink, 2016) with ambiguous function, purported to belong to the artist's uncle. First shown at MMK Frankfurt in 2016 and reconfigured for the exhibition, this hypnagogic environment, replete with watercoolers, plants, posters, people working at desks, as well as a waiting area and corporate infomercial, conflates time and space, compounding the quasi-authenticity of the scene and pseudo-legitimacy of the proposition.
The sound of a tranquil voice emanates from the DEEP TRAVEL Ink's company infomercial, positioned behind the reception area. "Imagine yourself there floating in the water...WE WILL TAKE YOU JUST A BIT DEAPER...WE WILL TAKE YOU JUST A BIT FURVER...get the mud off your shoes." This video is latticed with images of scorching beaches framed by palm trees, clouds bursting, stunning sunsets, squids skating on water and aspirational images of holiday homes. Combined, they coax the viewer into a wilful contemplation of escape. They are cognitively transportative whilst also offering a rational means by which to explore the installation. Travelling deeper and further into its belly, where more works can be uncovered, a concrete or psychic destination remains tantalizingly uncertain.
This discovery bears witness to familiar tropes of Laure's practice. Two film installations, alongside paintings and sculptural elements, combine under the heavy, influencing force of the travel agency. The anthropomorphic potential of objects is subjected to this specific context. In this exhibition, the objects and images that inhabit Laure's films and installations demonstrate an awareness of their own purpose and function with humorous consequence. They can embody the role of a lead protagonist or simply jostle for attention among other voices and forms, further interrupting and complicating the delivery of narrative. Disavowed of a body, breasts reclaim their agency by clearly stating their intentions. Disembodied, yet with a voice, a function and a personality, they cause havoc in the real world, running amok among the serious business of making the necessary arrangements for travel.
About the artist
Laure Prouvost confounds imagery and language, memory and narrative and examines methods of communication while disrupting traditional notions of human perception and systems of representation. Combining language, images and objects to form discursive scenarios that address the audience directly, the viewer is rendered as a conduit for narratives to unfold. This re-framing of experience transforms the passive viewer into active participant through an enduring complicity.
Laure Prouvost was born in Lille, France (1978) and is currently based in London and Antwerp. She received herBFA from Central St Martins, London in 2002 and studied towards her MFA at Goldsmiths College, London. She also took part in the LUX Associate Programme. Solo exhibitions include They Are Waiting for You, Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, MN, USA, 2017; the wet wet wanderer, as part of Para|Fiction, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, 2017; softer and rounder so as to shine through your smooth marble, SALT Galata, Istanbul, Turkey, 2017; And she will say: hi her, ailleurs, to higher grounds..., Kunstmuseum Luzern, Switzerland, 2016; GDM - Grand Dad's Visitor Center, Pirelli HangarBicocca, Milan, Italy, 2016; all behind, we'll go deeper, deep down and she will say, Museum Für Moderne Kunst Frankfurt Am Main, Frankfurt, Germany, 2016; Into All That is Here, Red Brick Art Museum, Beijing, China, 2016; we would be floating away from the dirty past, Haus Der Kunst, Munich, Germany, 2015; For Forgetting, New Museum, New York, NY, USA, 2014; While You Weren't Looking, Laboratorio Arte Alameda, Mexico City, Mexico, 2014; Max Mara Art Prize for Women, Whitechapel Gallery, London, UK and Collezione Maramotti, Reggio Emilia, Italy, 2013; Laure Prouvost / Adam Chodzko as part of Schwitters in Britain, Tate Britain, London, UK, 2013; The Hepworth Wakefield, Wakefield, UK, 2012; and All These Things Think Link, Flat Time House, London, UK. Prouvost's work will also be the subject of a forthcoming solo exhibition at Palais de Tokyo, Paris, France in 2018. Prouvost won the MaxMara Art Prize for Women in 2011 and was the recipient of the Turner Prize in 2013.
Press release courtesy Lisson Gallery.
Laure Prouvost 's most recent exhibition in New York at Lisson Gallery (9 March–14 April 2018) was a gesamtkunstwerk of sorts. The show spread through the entire 10 th Avenue gallery space and included two years of artistic production: installation, sculpture, painting, textile, sound and moving image. Uncle's Travel Agency Franchise, Deep...
Eager to see the art in Laure Prouvost's first solo exhibition at Lisson Gallery in New York, visitors might breeze through its central installation: Uncle's Travel Agency Franchise, Deep Travel Ink. NYC , 2016-2018. Situated at the entrance to the gallery, it looks like an unkempt and outdated version of an art gallery's normally pristine front...