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9th International Biennial of Photography and Visual Arts to open in Liege
Série/Reeks « Arirang », 2005 © Philippe Chancel - Eric Franck Fine Art, London. Idoles - La Cité Miroir.
LIEGE.- Even if it lies, the image attracts in the way light does and hypnotizes us. If, though, it tells the truth, it reveals more than reality and leads us to awareness of a higher complexity beyond its frame. The most troubling is that the image is lying and telling the truth at the same time. Its power to enthrall and to prove go hand in hand, for better and for worse. Seeing and believing will be the two key words of this 9th International Biennial of Photography and Visual Arts of Liège. Between these two words, between image and belief, there is an inextricable link that BIP2014 would like to question by presenting a selection of art works, which will combine documentary visions, installations and sculptural approaches. Throughout this eclectic selection, mystification and the sacred will have their place, many times tied to each other.

THE THEME:
The image is a source of promises. Even if it lies, the image attracts in the way light does and hypnotizes us. If, though, it tells the truth, it reveals more than reality and leads us to awareness and to the comprehension of a higher complexity beyond its frame. The most troubling is that the image is lying and telling the truth at the same time. Its power to enthrall and to prove go hand in hand, for better and for worse. The ques- tion is not to decide between what is true and what is false, but, on the contrary, to take full measure of this unchanging vagueness in our relation to the image and its « truth ». An unsteadiness which makes us swallow just anything, which determines our point of view or our opinion on an event, but which also arouses emotions, and moves us, because the pow- er and efficiency of phantasmagorias, whether sweet or cruel, is closely related to our desire for mirage.

Seeing and believing will be the two key words of this 9th In- ternational Biennial of Photography and Visual Arts of Liège. Between these two words, between image and belief, there is an inextricable link that BIP2014 would like to question by presenting a selection of art works, which will combine documentary visions, installations and sculptural approaches. Throughout this eclectic selection, mystification and the sa- cred will have their place, many times tied to each other... Seeing and believing are strongly embedded in Christian tra- dition, and this cultural basis has, until nowadays, its conse- quences on our relationship to images, depending on if you are a believer or non-believer. Despite the ban of the second commandment of the Bible (in contrary to Judaism which fol- lowed, and to Islam, which condemns any representation), Christianity has produced images that had an iconic status and served as such in worship service. However, the quarrel between the iconoclasts and iconodules during the 8th and 9th centuries shows that, when it comes to belief in the image, the frontier between the eikon (the icon; here the image is a medium that allows reaching the unpresentable divinity and whose status is symbolic) and the eîdolon (the idol; here the image is venerated for itself, just like if it embodied the divin- ity in truth and reality) is thin.

In our western culture, the religious and metaphysical ties of the image have imposed an imaginary of the ?non-painted im- age" over the centuries, produced by impression, transfer or imprint - amongst them photography - and following photog- raphy, film and other means of mecanical reproduction of the visible - have come and revealed an immense power. Daniel Grojnowski doesn't hesitate in his book Photographie et Croy- ance [Photography and Belief ] to announce that ?photography, even if it's the result of a multiplicity of constantly renewing processes, preserves a stable status in the public's mind : an authentic capture of the real." He even goes further by claim- ing that ?all photography is Christian" because of the fact that it calls for adherence.

In our western culture, the religious and metaphysical ties of the image have imposed an imaginary of the ?non-painted im- age" over the centuries, produced by impression, transfer or imprint - amongst them photography - and following photog- raphy, film and other means of mecanical reproduction of the visible - have come and revealed an immense power. Daniel Grojnowski Grojnowski doesn't hesitate in his book Photographie et Croy- ance [Photography and Belief ] to announce that ?photography, even if it's the result of a multiplicity of constantly renewing processes, preserves a stable status in the public's mind : an authentic capture of the real." He even goes further by claim- ing that ?all photography is Christian" because of the fact that it calls for adherence.

On the basis of this temptation, of this attraction it is rather hard to resist to, power, clearly identified or rather nebulous, massively uses this force of visual persuasion for trying to convince us, on a conscious or unconscious level. Nowadays, the fanatism of the image and its suite of effects of belief takes on a dimension never reached before - maybe in reaction to a society which claims to be rational. Media and communica- tion industries, religious and all kind of spiritual proselytism, marketing and economy count amongst the fields of action of images, heavily mobilized to push us to believe in them.

The disillusionment can be bitter. Despite our hopes, miracles don't exist. The image may turn out to be a chimera, which above all reveals our crazy attraction towards illusion and lie. Paradise is pixelised.






Today's News

March 2, 2014

"Glossy Paper: A Century of Fashion Photography at Condé Nast" opens in Paris

Christie's New York presents the Spring 2014 Sales of Asian Art Week taking place from 18-21 March

American photographer Garry Winogrand retrospective on view at National Gallery of Art, Washington

Art Institute of Chicago presentation showcases the art and science of Renoir painting

Exhibition at Luxembourg & Dayan explores the intersection of painting and sculpture

Georgia Museum of Art at the University of Georgia features censored 1940s art in "Art Interrupted"

Koller Zurich announces Spring auctions including the sale of Jan Gossaert's "Virgin and Child"

Family portraits and treasures return home to tell the stories of Osterley Park and House

9th International Biennial of Photography and Visual Arts to open in Liege

Two Brooklyn Museum nineteenth-century period rooms have been conserved and refurbished

Exhibition of works by Alina Szapocznikow opens at Tel Aviv Museum of Art

Christy Brown's guide to life in important archive to be sold at Bonhams

Jordan McKenzie returns to Yorkshire Sculpture Park with new exhibition Carl An(t)dre + LeWitt Lean

New York: A Mod Portrait of the City is an imaginative and beautiful travel guides

Rampa Istanbul presents an exhibition of the work of Ergin Çavuşoğlu

Former slave trade town seeks to become African art hub

New large-scale paintings by Liam Everett on view at On Stellar Rays

Full steam ahead for Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions' Transport Sale

Ulrich Museum exhibition puts spotlight on the lives of children behind bars

Philbrook Museum of Art presents Ronan & Erwan Bouroullec exhibition

Paul Jacobsen's Lean-To opens at Klemens Gasser & Tanja Grunert in New York

Pictures from a treasure trove for sale at Bonhams in London

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