Pierre Bismuth

by aucourantarts

As the title of the blog suggests the majority of the posts will be about current/contemporary art, but sometimes (this post included) I shall blog about artists who have shaped and influenced my own practice as a BA Fine Art student, starting with Brussels-based, French artist Pierre Bismuth. I recently became aware of Bismuth’s work when my own practice shifted from being paint-based to more conceptual and ideas-based. The idea of the double is something else which I have played around with within my own work and Bismuth also plays on this concept in such a successful way, through the newspaper format. Talking about his work he explains, “The ‘Newspaper’ series is all about the duplication of the image. Duplication is an important method because I think it completely warps the moment of understanding. The images do not refer anymore to reality but they refer to each other, as if one image was copying the other. As a viewer you tend to forget they are addressing some real matter, you just wonder, why are there two of these? So it is a short-circuit in your head.” (http://selfselector.co.uk/2010/10/05/double-trouble-interview-with-pierre-bismuth/) But it’s not only the idea of the double which drew me to Bismuth’s work, it’s also this idea of making something which is so mass-produced and ordinary into something unique and extra-ordinary, a theme which i also picked up on in my previous Louise Hopkins post. The idea of using materials which are often discarded after their primary use and giving them a new lease of life is an issue which im currently dealing with within my own practice. But Bismuth doesn’t restrict himself to working with just newspapers, I am also interested in the series of work titled Following the Right Hand…

Three years ago Bismuth exhibited this series of altered photographs in Team Gallery New York. Bismuth projects a film onto a sheet of plexi-glass painstakingly follows the movements of the lead actress’ right hand with a black marker by the end of the film the photograph almost looks  signed, an accidental outcome of this’ performance’. Bismuth continues to alter (in most ways for the better) everyday objects and I constantly look forward to seeing new pieces of his work emerge.