mehryl levisse

birds of a feather fly together /

les oiseaux de même plumage volent ensemble

installation in situ

2017

 

 

tatinca tabacaru gallery

new york / états-unis / 07.06.2017 - 09.07.2018

commissaire catinca tabacaru

 

sur les murs

le jardin des souvenirs, 2017

papier peint,

impression laser sur dos bleu

motif de 400cm x 300cm adapté aux dimensions de la galerie

 

au centre

camp., 2015 - 2017

5 masques

cuir, tissu, kapok, dentelle, plumes, tapisserie, sequins,

perles, maquillage, cheveux humain, embases, pompons, galon,

boutons, cheveux synthétiques, cordelette, œillets, fourrure, fil d'or

pièces uniques

 

tante italienne, 2017

masque

cuir, tissu, dentelle de calais, sequins, perles, pompons,

galon, cordelette, œillets, fourrure, fil d'or

pièce unique

 

sur les murs

la monture, 2011

captation photographique encadré

tirage argentique sur lambda

100cm x 67cm

 

marrée basse sur table d'élevage, 2015

captation photographique encadrée

tirage argentique sur lambda

100cm x 67cm

 

faire tapisserie, 2013

captation photographique encadrée

tirage argentique sur lambda

45cm x 30cm

 

le lieu reposé du chevreuil, 2013

captation photographique encadrée

tirage argentique sur lambda

100cm x 67cm

 

 

 

 

 

In his first New York solo exhibition Birds of a feather fly together, opening June 7th at Catinca Tabacaru Gallery,

young French artist Mehryl Levisse presents an eccentric world blending childhood memories, like the drama he

learned from his italien aunts who were mourners and paid to cry at funerals, with art history, BDSM references,

and the aesthetics of hampagne-Ardenne, the rural backwood where he spent his formative years. This

history-laden region of france has become neglected as its population dwindles.

 

"There, decrepit mansions are full of dusty decorations, yellowish wallpapers, and charged ornaments. I love

these caulk atmospheres : they are eerie and reassuring at the same time..." says Levisse, whose work was

exhibited at Centre pompidou and Musée de la Chasse in Paris in the past year.

 

In New York; Levisse has turned the gallery into an immersive environnement with every surface covered in his

kaleidoscopic wallpaper. Four photographs, six masks and two performers grace the space, inviting us into their

shadowy realm. Using bodies, his and thoseof others, Levisse's aesthetic in infused with nudity and comic situations.

Wild and elaborate costumes are meticulously crafted and sewn by his own hand, while privy limbs writhe in

colorful Aubusson-esque tapestries. fantastical characters play hide-and-seek and stike frisky poses while the

photographs are blessed with double meanings and a satisfying absurdity. This balance seems fragile, poetic

and provocative.

 

The meticulous sets he creates and installs are parodies of society, both critical and pathetic, manipulating the

long-established codes of theater, and implementing the body as an object. He thinks of his photographs as

documents, traces of moments and situations that took place in his studio. For this reason, he does not edit or

manipulate the images created.

 

In one image, his lover poses like Odalisque, a colony of mollusks afixed on his face and flanks. In another frame,

Levisse's bare buttox arises from a sea of dark colored tapestries. The title of the latter, "faire tapisserie" (i.e.

to melt into the decor), referring to a phrase to describe people who are not noticed or who are not important -

the invisibles.

 

Six sculptures occupy the center of the gallery's space. Each is a mask made with precision using such noble

materials as fine Calais lace, pearls, leather, ornate tapestry off-cuts, and human hair. They are impaled on iron

rods erected on a carnival like stage of glowing colored lights. They give birth to mysterious visages, erotically

loaded and sewn to fit the artist's own face. Levisse leaves us to wonder if upon wearing one we might be

consumed by it, relinquishing our individual selves to the spirit within.

 

text by Marie Salomé Peyronnel