24.09.16 – 20.11.16
With Kamp Kataloog by Swiss artist and writer Jérémie Gindre, KIOSK ushers in autumn. This third and final episode of Gindre’s exhibition project Camp Catalogue follows the first instalment in summer 2015, at La Criée centre d’art contemporain in Rennes, and a second camp in spring 2016 at La Kunsthalle in Mulhouse.
At KIOSK, Gindre takes us on an excursion through his temporary campsite, systematically revealing along the way a poetic study of the morphology of campsites and their natural surroundings. The exhibition assumes the function of a tourist site or centre of expertise and education like a national park or a bird sanctuary. From different vantage points, scales, and vistas, Gindre casts a critical yet playful eye on our accepted exhibition codes and our continual urge to domesticate nature. The title Kamp Kataloog brings together the notions of cultivated and unspoilt landscapes, the inventory, and that which eludes description. The ‘catalogue’ refers to scientific inventories and the different disciplines that make use of them: botany, geology, ornithology ...
During our visit, we are introduced to six ‘drawing clubs’, as Gindre calls the framed ink drawings. They classify elements from nature; like pine cones, for instance, that are shown as a brilliantly diverse type in C for Cones. Further on, Une Glissade is an attempt to capture the kind of monumental landslides that are hard to wrap one’s head around, and we also encounter a parade of abstracts portraits of Prairie grass. Series of 8, 9, 12 and 24 drawings accumulate over time and are presented as a group. In some cases, an additional one joins them: Gindre calls these ‘intruders’, and they highlight the common traits in the group.
Unlike the serial and accumulative drawings, the wooden furniture seem designed to slow down time. The bridge, bench and fountain evoke actions linked to walking: drinking, observing, resting, crossing a line, finding our way. The title L’utile & l’agréable, however, indicates that these objects are more than their function. They echo the (artificial) rustic style of national parks that enhances the illusion of an authentic experience to make our time out as aesthetically pleasing as possible.
The two tableaux-textes on canvas head in a more narrative direction, and function as open windows on a different time and space. Les Sapins, for instance, is an adapted excerpt from Lewis & Clark’s diaries from their early-nineteenth-century expedition through the North-American west. The story can be read like a painting, or looked at like a page from a book turned painting. Like these textual paintings, the black line-drawings on the walls suggest new horizons branching out from the exhibition space.
In narration and drawing, Gindre creates an autumnal landscape infused with the fragrances of beeswax and wood, for two months of slowly shortening days and where, with a little imagination, we may hear the sound of falling leaves and pine cones, the crackle of a campfire or a finch, singing in his peculiar dialect. The artist alternately assumes the perspective of a child, a scientist, an explorer and a tourist, and invites us to walk down the trails he has set out, but above all to stray from them.
On the occasion of the exhibition, Jérémie Gindre’s artist’s book Camp Catalog, presenting the drawings and texts from the project, is published by Lendroit éditions in cooperation with La Criée, Rennes, La Kunsthalle, Mulhouse, and KIOSK.