Jean-Pascal Flavien. Ballardian House

8 Sep 2017 – 21 Oct 2017

Esther Schipper

Berlin, Germany


Travel Information

  • The M85 and M48 bus routes have stops on Potsdamer Strasse at Lützowstrasse. (1 min. walk). Alternatively, take the M29 which stops at Potsdamer Brücke. (5 min. walk)
  • Take either the U1 to Kurfürstenstrasse or the U2 to Bülowstrasse and exit onto Potsdamer Strasse. Esther Schipper Gallery and Office are just a 3 minute walk away.

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Esther Schipper is pleased to announce Ballardian House, Jean-Pascal Flavien's second solo exhibition with the gallery.


Jean-Pascal Flavien has constructed a life-sized house within the exhibition space. Set in the midst of a sandy ground with a number of rocks, the environment evokes a desert. Made of two near identical structures, posed at an angle and apparently held by a central hinge, the house, entitled Ballardian House, addresses a notion of doubling, coupling, and splitting—processes that continue throughout the exhibition. The two parts constitute separate but connected elements: while one section of the house is accessible and may accommodate a living inhabitant, its double is inhabited only by a stone. The landscape thus enters the building and becomes trapped in this museum-like space: like a vitrine, the closed-off structure holds its contents in a state of being looked at. Building and landscape are contingent, organizing one another in a reciprocal exchange of qualities.

Ballardian House creates a concrete setting, while evoking an entire fictional universe. Dissolving demarcation between mental space, built structure and surrounding landscape, Jean-Pascal Flavien's house draws on the writings of J.G. Ballard whose highly charged dystopian scenarios often displace psychological and existential conditions onto buildings and landscapes. The house will include custom-made furnishings, specific to its premise, drawing both on Jean-Pascal Flavien's formal vocabulary and on a condensed Ballardian world. New sculptural works inside the building will also draw on texts: represented by conglomerates of citations from Ballard's writing, these works are neither real nor abstract but exist at once in multiple fictional locations and realities—as if the words were bringing to completion what is not physically present. In addition, the landscape outside the house will include a pair of entangled chairs that echo the house's act of doubling yet also invoke the presence of inhabitants, just as doubling rows of small boulders recall an archaic meeting place but also incorporates an instance of mirroring. The sculptures can appear to shift between states: at times present as discrete objects, at others fusing more resolutely chameleon-like into the fantastic landscape Ballardian House conjures up.

Jean-Pascal Flavien’s practice combines elements from architecture, sculpture, and the performative. The artist's houses are based on imaginary settings imposed by the artist and/or requirements determined by function and imagined site. Each house bespeaks certain circumstances (technical, aesthetic and existential) but in turn may also itself produce such conditions. The structures are conceptual entities, representing ideas, locations, and events in which the architectural conditions can determine the behavior of its inhabitants (and vice versa).

Exhibiting artists

Jean-Pascal Flavien


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