It is in these terms that Georges Didi-Huberman spoke in 2014 about the recent choices of his critical work.
The artists of the exhibition Bruit Blanc are united under the double common denominator of drawing and music. The two domains are here intertwined, so that sometimes the graphic work they develop escapes precisely the classification of the fine arts.
This is a fairly broad interpretation of the drawing in question here. Consider, for example, the drawings of Jean-Luc Verna: bodies on stage inspired by both rock culture and Félicien Rops executed in the manner of a master. In contrast, we have elsewhere a form of regressive primitivism with Jean-Louis Costes, which testifies to an immediacy that the drawing probably restores better than the other practices. Here the line is rough and the colors are garish, not without provocation.
This primitive universe is still found in several artists of the exhibition from the illustration.Jim Sanders' drawings, immediately recognizable, feed on the interests of their author for art brut and theatricality. The same wild energy is found in Arrington de Dionyso. The work of Norwegian Sindre Foss Skancke tends to morbid, probably under the influence of Scandinavian black metal he loves. But to this primitive character respond more interior universes, in the manner of Fanny Michaëlis, known for his illustrations in books like Le Lait noir or Before my father was also a child. This is still the case of Xavier Mussat.
The work of the Japanese Tetsunori Tawaraya, for its part, is part of the aesthetics of contemporary fanzines, marked equally by science fiction and a certain animism. Still others correspond better to the usual category of the fine arts. The drawings of Scotsman David Shrigley are not wild. His graphic work is as simple as his sculptures intended for the public space. Rainier Lericolais' compositions and Julien Langendorff's collages follow codes of contemporary art. This is also the case of Mathieu Weiler, who revisits the history of art.
It is also the musical practice that connects the artists of the exhibition, be it pop, punk, electronic or experimental music. Again, White noise allows the meeting of very different cultures. But it is on this ground that Jean-Luc Verna's Apologize joins the provocative stage performances of Costes. Their live performances become performances in the sense that we hear them in the field of art. It is in the field of music that the experimental rock of Old Time Relijun of Arrington of Dionysus meets the music of Rainier Lericolais. And each time, the graphic work is coherent with the musical production.
Thus, the music of Fanny Michaëlis through Fatherkid is complementary to his pictorial universe, the pop of David Shrigley coincides with the simplicity that it deploys as an artist.Sometimes music is a secret passion. Other times, it's a career that is being developed in parallel. But basically, it does not matter. The status of these materials, whether scraped on paper or produced on stage, is not critical.
If the remark of Didi-Huberman is relevant, it is that the classification of the fine arts is perhaps no longer operative today. At the dawn of the twentieth century, the avant-gardes had tried to break these classifications in terms of practice. Conceptual art and Fluxus then attacked dedicated institutions and the art market. If the markets remained very compartmentalized, the rock cultures could have sounded the death knell of what one called formerly the fine arts. Rock arrives at the time of the commercialization of the vinyl record and it constitutes from the start a culture in its own right, in the manner of a teenage religion. Since the early 1960s, artists have been interested in this new situation, or by drawing their inspiration, or because they themselves belonged to one or other of these "packs" before becoming artists. In this case, they will restore the codes. There were families of artists organized according to aesthetic trends, now there are families whose common affinities for specific musical cultures generate some cohesion. We know how much music has shaped the work of artists such as Mike Kelley or Steven Parrino. Several artists have emerged directly from rock culture, like Raymond Pettibon through Black Flag and the label We know how much music has shaped the work of artists such as Mike Kelley or Steven Parrino. Several artists have emerged directly from rock culture, like Raymond Pettibon through Black Flag and the label We know how much music has shaped the work of artists such as Mike Kelley or Steven Parrino. Several artists have emerged directly from rock culture, like Raymond Pettibon through Black Flag and the labelSST . It's the same today for metal or electronic music. Carsten Nicolai has for decades been a dual career in art and music under the pseudonym Alva Noto.
It's very postmodern. In a context where contemporary art has become a genre rather than a relation to history, the intertwining of art, music, fashion and illustration takes on a special meaning. Affinities have become issues, and collaborations of all kinds have affected ecosystems in different areas. A musician can exhibit in a gallery or host a TV show dedicated to gastronomy without these associations seem unnatural. The same goes for artists who record discs. Labels have made it a specialty, but the shackles still seemed too heavy; it is now on the stages specifically dedicated to the music that the visual artists are produced. The temptation was too strong.
In a very skilful way, the exhibition Noise White in the Topography of Art space testifies to this change. She explores beyond classifications.
The title itself takes on a particular meaning: if the noise refers to the decibels sent by the artists gathered for the occasion, the white can also be interpreted as the tone obtained by the totality of the luminous spectrum, namely the diversity genres and cultures.