May 16, 2018 - CAC Brétigny - Florian Sumi: MEMBRAINS
May 16, 2018

CAC Brétigny

Charles Mazé & Coline Sunier, The ABCC of CACB, 2018.

Florian Sumi
MEMBRAINS
May 26–July 21, 2018

Opening: May 26, 5–9pm, Event shuttle from Paris to Brétigny is available by request

CAC Brétigny
rue Henri Douard
91220 Brétigny-sur-Orge
France
Hours: Tuesday–Saturday 2–6pm

T +33 1 60 85 20 78
info@cacbretigny.com

www.cacbretigny.com
Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Florian Sumi
MEMBRAINS
May 26–July 21, 2018

Opening: May 26, 5–9pm, Event shuttle from Paris to Brétigny is available by request

CAC Brétigny
rue Henri Douard
91220 Brétigny-sur-Orge
France
Hours: Tuesday–Saturday 2–6pm

T +33 1 60 85 20 78
info@cacbretigny.com

www.cacbretigny.com
Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Florian Sumi with Emma Balimaka, Adrien Cruellas and Dragovan
Curator: Céline Poulin
 

Fiona putting makeup on while words are exchanged between Emma and Medhi, shooting out rapid fire for one, flowing in a murmur for the other. The camera is rolling, literally circling, as François endlessly winds around the various characters. Masked by the shadows, I observe this dizzying merry-go-round. Are these really characters? The position of each, embodied in words, is confused, multifaceted. In Brussels Florian met Emma Balimaka, who practices white magic. They talked a lot. The text he drafted for the characters springs from those words, that interpretation of the world. Then each of them rewrote their text, the lines they were to speak before the camera’s roving eye. In white magic, writing is fundamental; it delineates the imprint of desire to make it effective. It makes visible what is not to help it attain another level of reality. So that the wish is realized.

I didn’t watch the making of the other films. They will be installed on their totem-screens in Brétigny, built with the help of Les Fabriqueurs, a Fab-lab with which Sumi worked thanks to Le Cube. I saw a long shot of Emma Balimaka, bathed in an orangey light, her skin covered in a sienna powder, telling us how magic works, which connects all things, according to her. I heard Sumi recite the lines of his exchange with Marcel, an acupuncturist... I discovered Sumi’s work when he was still at the fine arts school in Dijon, studying under Marc-Camille Chaimowicz, and his ways of making art never cease to amaze me. The interaction that develops between him and the people sharing in his work is just like the subjects of his research, complex and hard to summarize, for everything is interlinked at many levels. You could say that everything in what Sumi does is holistic, that is, each element is part of a whole, and everything is connected.

I haven’t yet viewed the films created by Sumi and Adrien Cruellas, not to mention the exhibition, so I can’t really tell you about them. New age references to a mystical or cosmological understanding will surely be seen alongside queer, technical and laboratory imagery. “Do you believe this?” That is not the question. What is important is what that produces. What that produces in terms of sensations, actions, and of course images. Cell bubbles burst and reproduce when a game of solitaire appears all by itself in CGI. A film shows a table. Its natural marble top inevitably conjures up a mineral force whereas its metal legs and their strong lines point us towards a Mad Max world of science fiction. At this writing, in Sumi’s studio others pieces of furniture are being fashioned with the help of an expert leather worker by the name of Dragovan. A seat delicately hollowed out of the solid wood of a tree trunk displays the tree’s bark and veins. The seat of another chair is all stretched leather, wedding the modern technology of metal with the animal nature of a skin that reveals hints of its origins. The production lab of effective micro-organizations is modeled beneath the sure hand of Adrien Cruellas, here again linking the spare, stripped-down figure of a lab biology to the teaming figure of Eastern medicine.

There is a fascinating and allegorical beauty in these filmed images and fashioned objects. I wrote that Florian Sumi is like a mad savant and yet he tells me he is nothing other than a savant. In terms of knowledge, he transmits that of others, taking care to grasp its true substance, as much theoretical as esthetic, so that from all those separate areas of knowledge a new world will spring.

Press file available here

Florian Sumi was born in 1984 in Dijon. He is represented by the Escougnou-Cetraro Gallery, Paris. A graduate of Dijon’s École des Beaux-Arts under the tutelage of Marc Camille Chaimowicz, Sumi lives and works in Paris. An artist in residence at Parc Saint-Léger between 2012 and 2013, he has shown at the PM Gallery of Berlin, FavoriteGoods in Los Angeles, and Frac-Pays de la Loire. Between 2015 and 2016, he also took part in several group shows, including New Babylon at the Escougnou-Cetraro Gallery (Paris); D’autres possibles at Le Pavillon Vendôme Centre d’art Contemporain (Clichy); Les Incessants at Villa du Parc, Centre d’art Contemporain of Annemasse; and Janus: do you pray for me? at the Machete Gallery of Mexico City. In 2017, the artist had his first solo show at the Escougnou-Cetraro Gallery. His work is now part of collections of the Frac Pays de la Loire, Cube—Centre de création numérique (Issy-les-Moulineaux), and the Collection Famille Servais.

A public service of Cœur d’Essonne Agglomération, CAC Brétigny benefits from the support of Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication—DRAC Île-de-France, Région Île-de-France and Conseil départemental de l’Essonne, and with the complicity of the Brétigny-sur-Orge's municipality. CAC Brétigny is a member of TRAM and d.c.a. This project has been carried out in partnership with Le Cube—Centre de création numérique, Les Fabriqueurs, Jean-Pierre Timbaud Highschool (Brétigny-sur-Orge) and Théâtre Brétigny, and with the support of Labaye Éditeur and Brionne Industrie.

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