French-Caribbean Artist Julien Creuzet on Using Creole Hymns and Digital Avatars to Retrace African Ancestry, Anna Sansom, δημοσίευση στο Artnet news [8/3/2023]
On the wall of Julien Creuzet’s exhibition at High Art in Paris is a 1976 newspaper article about “the only voodoo temple in Europe.” Published in Le Monde, the story describes a dinner at a time where white Parisians were served by Black “boys and girls” before participating in a frenetic, drum-beating voodoo ceremony. The event took place in the Pigalle district, where High Art is coincidentally located.
This article, with its condescending tone of exoticism, is one of two references points in Creuzet’s exhibition title, “The Possessed of Pigalle or the Tragedy of King Christophe.” The second is a satirical 1963 play by Aimé Césaire, the Martinican poet, playwright, and politician, which focuses on a Haitian hero who is crowned king following the country’s independence from France in 1804. In his quest to imitate the ruling style of a European monarch, he becomes despotic and, faced with an uprising, takes his own life.
Through these disparate points, the 36-year-old Creuzet, who was recently named to represent France at the Venice Biennale in 2024, has reflected upon the the painful colonial history, landscape, and culture of the Caribbean, from Haiti to Creuzet’s homeland, Martinique, one of France’s 12 overseas territories. The large solo exhibition (running until April 8) is nuanced and multilayered, and as brightly colored and exuberant as it is poignant and disquieting.
“What I found interesting is how making a gallery exhibition can be something much richer and more intense, almost like a film, with landscapes and characters like in literature,” Creuzet told me as we meandered through the exhibition that seems to hover between the past, present, and future. “I like the idea that the exhibition can be a sprawling cinema [narrating] a documentary fiction between what’s real and what isn’t.”
Η συνέχεια εδώ.