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Biennial of Contemporary Art at La Criée Centre for Contemporary Art
Gianni Motti, Gianni Motti Assistant, 2008, copyright : Gianni Motti.
RENNES.- On May 16, the world will see the opening of the first Ateliers de Rennes–Biennial of Contemporary Art. Instigated by Art Norac, the corporate sponsorship association of the Norac agribusiness group, the first biennial, titled Shared Values, has been designed and organised by the Art To Be Association. Symbolic of the relationship between art and business, the event focuses in particular on the creation of value, a matter of concern to both artists and companies in terms of their output.

To mark the occasion, Art To Be and La Criée are inviting artist Gianni Motti, known for his distinctive vision of the way work functions.

Unique in their field, Motti's works take the form of one-off operations, most often outside the art world as such. The results are artistic propositions having to do with simple but radical acts, or exhibitions enabling the introduction of "spanner in the works" visual elements that modify or disturb the functioning of an art institution and, by extension, the public's reception of the works on show.

From acting out his own death in July 1989 to claiming responsibility for the California earthquake of 1992, Motti reveals a genius for subversion and appropriation of everyday events. In May 2005 he made a descent into a 27-kilometre underground ring of the CERN particle accelerator and walked its entire length in the name of art – a serious contrast with the movement of particles being projected at the speed of light.

His La Criée exhibition at the Ateliers de Rennes Biennial will comprise two works. The first is a Minimalist installation in the Art Centre, where over 18,000 loose cobblestones will cover the entire floor area. The absence of pointing will make the surface – and the visitors walking on it – unstable, so that both are on edge. At once dense, solid, sober, precarious and slightly wobbly, the installation raises a number of contemporary issues such as lack of commitment and ambient uncertainty. It also questions the place of the artist and the art centre in the context of the work ethic.

Motti's artistic agenda has more to do with discussion and speculation than with unrestrained productivity, and the installation is a brilliant illustration of his stance: while harking back to the events of May 1968, this is not a work of remembrance or militancy, but rather an interrogative venture in which the artist dispenses with symbolic and conceptual gambits and injects new life into the workings of critical thinking.

The second work involves the activation of a "Gianni Motti Assistant" who will walk the streets of Rennes wearing a yellow T-shirt inscribed with the words "Gianni Motti Assistant" in black. Associated with this figure are a number of photographs, of which one will circulate widely via the post, drops, and the Internet. The photograph shows an actual encounter between the "Gianni Motti Assistant" and the "Municipal Police". The appearance of various such Assistants all over the world activates the artist's presence without actually revealing their true mission – to act as signs, and to interact according to the context and the Assistant's degree of commitment within the environment concerned.



Last Week News

May 13, 2008

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Picasso Museum in Malaga Presents Restored Books Made by the Artist

Battlefields of the Civil War: Photography by William Earle Williams at Houston's MFA

Cleveland Museum Says Discussions are Continuing Between the Museum and the Italians

Asa Ames Exhibit at the American Folk Art Museum in New York

Architectural Projects by Stephen Taylor and Ryue Nishizawa at The Canadian Centre for Architecture

Brit Art of the Sixties Set to Open at Mark Barrow Fine Art

Manfred Leve: Glances and Sights, Photography from Five Decades at Gallery Ficher Rohr

Halcyon Gallery to Hold First Gallery Exhibition of Bob Dylan Art

Chinese Imperial Jades in the Collections of The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge

Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art Transforms Gallery into Hallucinatory Space

Spencer Tunick and Vienna's Kunsthalle Gather 1,840 People to Pose Nude at Stadium

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The Shell Guides: Surrealism, Modernism, Tourism at the Museum of Domestic Design & Architecture

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Royal Museums of Fine Arts in Belgium Celebrate Architect Joze Plecnik

May 12, 2008

Palazzo Strozzi To Open "Painting Light: The hidden techniques of the Impressionists"

A Very Personal Picasso: The Lucia Bosé Collection to be Offered at Christie's London

Run Of Impressionist Landscapes Exhibition is Extended at Virginia Museum of Fine Arts

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Important European Furniture, Ceramics, and Carpets at Christie's New York

Mahjong: Contemporary Chinese Art from the Sigg Collection To Open at BAM/PFA

The Cartier Award 2008: Winner Announced: Cuban Artist Wilfredo Prieto

Moscow Museum of Modern Art Presents Citizens! Please Mind Yourselves! Dmitry A. Prigov

Vija Celmins and Apichatpong Weerasethakul Win Carnegie Prize and Fine Prize

SPACE NOW Fortieth Anniversary Exhibition

Free Museum Admission for Bank of America Cardholders

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May 11, 2008

Hamburger Kunsthalle Presents American Painter Mark Rothko. The Retrospective

Helmut Newton Foundation Presents "Pigozzi and the Paparazzi"

Denver Art Museum Extends Hours for Inspiring Impressionism Exhibition

The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center Presents Facebook: Images of People in Photographs

ART HK 08: The Source of Investments to Hang in the Home

Major Exhibition of Antiquarian Maps at the Ukranian Museum

Aerial Portraits of the American West: Photographs by John Shelton

CCS Bard Presents Lisi Raskin's Mobile Observation (Transmitting and Receiving) Station

John Armleder and Olivier Mosset Featured at The Contemporary

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Photographers Wanted for EXPOSURE - A Competition Celebrating the Power of the Image

May 10, 2008

Paine Art Center Opens The Impressionist Figure Selections from the Albright-Knox

Artists in Depth: Works from the MCA Collection on View in Chicago

National Gallery of Ireland will present Impressionist Interiors

Smoke and Mirrors Presents 35 Works on Paper at The Seattle Art Museum

MFA Houston Exhibition to Feature Paintings from Egypt's Minister of Culture Farouk Hosny

Sothebys to Hold Inaugural Exhibition in Kiev and Preview in Moscow

Machines of Memory: Cameras from the Technology Collection at George Eastman House

International Fine Art Fair at the Park Avenue Armory Opens in New York

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The Language of the Nude: Four Centuries of Drawing the Human Body

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May 9, 2008

Form: Contemporary Architects at Play Opened at The Contemporary Arts Center

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Archibald Prize 2008: Vincent Fantauzzo Wins the People's Choice for his Portrait of Heath Ledger

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Metropolitan Museum Announces Master Photographer Exhibit in June

Reclaimed: Paintings from the Collection of Jacques Goudstikker at The Bruce Museum

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Major Gordon Bennett Survey to Open at GoMA

May 8, 2008

Sotheby's Sale of Impressionist and Modern Art Sets Record for Fernand Leger

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