A Paris Winter

Photography and installation exhibits not to be missed while abroad

Musical Chairs

Lisa Roy’s “untitled, bar stools, 20 x 30” at g–module.

Winter in Paris offers some fantastic photography and multimedia installations.

There is a Sophie Calle retrospective at the Centre Pompidou which is not to be missed. Calle’s exhibition begins with a narrative covering 92 days leading to the end of a relationship. Viewers line up to “read” what the artist describes as her most profound personal pain. Each photograph is unsentimentally stamped to mark that day and laid out like a calendar of regret. The retrospective spans more than 20 years worth of photography and installations.

On the other end of the photographic spectrum is Lisa Roy’s exhibition at g-module Gallery. This show explores interiors taken during a self-imposed mission aboard American ocean liners. The result is a bizarre architectural world in which proportions are delirious and the lighting theatrically disorients any sense of time, place, or scale. One untitled image of a purple bar with stools looks like a grand ball room or disco with huge mushroom chrome and plastic pillars. This is Roy’s first show at g-module in Paris.

She also shows at Debs and Co. in Chelsea.

Claus Goedicke at the Thaddaeus Ropac gallery shows an austere collection of large scale photos depicting bottles devoid of commercial packaging. The press release makes a reference to the artist attempting to occupy a visual midway between known adversaries Warhol and Rothko, but the loving attention to line and form and the smoky tonal quality of the images may also have lineage in the paintings of Morandi.

Installations and photographs lovingly come together at the Centre Culturel Suisse’s exhibition “Mondial.” Martin Hess, on the mezzanine gallery, has created a carnival of alternating projected portraits, a series of large display cases chock full of bric-a-brac, and one wall covered with a stunning grid of anonymous photographs that use a similar visual language seen in the work of Christian Boltanski. The effect is eclectic and curiously inviting.

Paris offers some excellent venues for contemporary art; more than I can mention here. For additional information on contemporary art galleries and museums in Paris check out these useful websites: frenchculture.org/art, paris-art.com, and culture.fr.

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