Guillaume Leblon, Likely Political Circumstances (2016) 3D print, PMMA (polymethyl methacrylate), infiltration epoxyy resin, spray paint [Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver BC, Oct 14-Jan 1] Courtesy of the artist and carlier | gebauer
In his first solo exhibition at a Canadian museum, the 45-year-old French artist known for his painting, sculpture and films has launched into a spatial reorientation of the gallery.
Back in the 1970s, gallery interventions took the form of institutional critique, where the work was just that: an interrogation of the gallery space in an effort to reveal its contradictions as a neutral site of display. Today, where expressions like changing the narrative are as common as moving things forward, gestures like Leblons are as much in the service of the object as they are critical of the institutions that house them.
For Untangled Figures, Leblon has made plywood alterations to the CAGs floor. Not simply to change the look of the space, but to alter how it sounds. A more disorienting visual gesture can be found in the artists construction of an unevenly placed shelf that follows the perimeter of the gallery walls. When combined with Leblons acoustic alteration, the effect is unnerving.
Most notable about Leblons intervention is how it directs our attention from the generalized atmosphere of the gallery to the specific details contained therein, much like what happens when we are feeling seasick when we shift our gaze to something fixed, not on the surging waves.