Displace, 2020 by Elena Khurtova & Marie Ilse Bourlanges exhibition view at Centre d'art 3bisF, photography by Jean-Christophe Lett
For Manifesta 13 – Les Parallèles du Sud, 3 bis f Contemporary Art Centre invites the artists Marie Ilse Bourlanges and Elena Khurtova to develop a sculptural opera bringing together narrative and matter. Addressing the topics of displacement and disappearance, their dual artistic approach is characterised by amplifying subtle gestures to become monumental in relation to the given context of 3 bis f, a former isolation pavilion for women (“F” for Female) of Montperrin psychiatric hospital.
Working with the hospital archive protocol, Marie Ilse Bourlanges investigates the missing story of Ilse, a German woman who was alienated in the psychiatric hospital of La Timone in Marseille from 1950 until she died in 1983. Knowing virtually nothing about her grandmother, Marie Ilse Bourlanges recomposes collected fragments as a narrative patchwork, voiced to rehabilitate the silent presence of Ilse.
– do you believe a person’s character can come from the soil he or she is born on? – In Russian traditions one that travels carries a handful of earth as protection.
In parallel, narrative and transient qualities of earth lead Elena Khurtova to research displacement through the specific case of “soil banks”, an organization that focuses on regulating ground flows released during excavation work. This organised displacement of matter is a starting point for her material translations in the space of 3 bis f. Countering the disappearance of intimacy with soil, Elena Khurtova performs gestures of care and explores the potential of her body collaborating with the excavated landscape.
Through elements of destruction and creation, soil and voice, the exhibition Displace proposes a dual reflection on the fragility and resilience of human and environmental conditions.
Displace, 2020 photography by Jean-Christophe Lett
Exhibition concept by Marie Ilse Bourlanges & Elena Khurtova Curated by Diane Pigeau With the support of Région Sud, Mondriaan Fonds, Stichting Stokroos and Centre Hospitalier Montperrin Centre d'Art 3 bis f, Hopital Psychiatrique de Montperrin Aix-en-Provence, France Les parallèles du Sud, Manifesta 13
Hyphen, 2020 by Elena Khurtova & Marie Ilse Bourlanges, Displace at Centre d'Art 3bisF
in-situ transient installation, non-fired clay replicas of Archives Nationale boxes (remnant of Dust to *dust), rubber, water w200 x l300 x h60cm
In dark water, several raw clay archive boxes slowly dissolve and return to their original state – as hyphen between the two artists who for this exhibition return to individual practices. The installation merges the ephemeral qualities of paper and earth, as well as that of narrative and landscape.
Mother's Milk, 2020 stainless steel machine, 13 x A4 paper script