Julie Béna’s work is made up of an eclectic set of references, combining contemporary and ancient literature, high and low art, joking, and seriousness, parallel times and spaces. Comprising sculpture, installation, film, and performance, her work often seems to float in an infinite vacuum, unfolding against a fictional backdrop where everything is possible.
Over the past years, Béna has developed a range of personal cosmologies in which she stages seemingly banal characters and objects that have enigmatic conversations and interactions with each other. From Pantopon Rose, a character taken from William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch, to Miss None and Mister Peanut, a disembodied floating wig and the iconic monocled anthropomorphic peanut, Béna lends her characters a singular agency and voice—they are defined by what they are not.
In a similar vein, Anna & the Jester in Window of Opportunity, the opening exhibition of Satellite 12, presents works that, through storytelling and the use of animation, have the stunning ability to bring to life characters that otherwise remain anonymous and inanimate. Comprising two sculptures and a new 3D animated film, Anna & the Jester in Window of Opportunity presents itself as a critique of transparency in the form of an architectural tale and narrates the curious encounter between a series of characters, both existing and imagined, while unsettling the distinction between virtual and real.