May 9, 2009 - La Criée Centre for Contemporary Art - Hubert Czerepok
May 9, 2009

Hubert Czerepok

Hubert Czerepok
drawing from the serie Seance (after Disasters of War), 2009
Courtesy of the artist and ZAK | BRANICKA Gallery, Berlin
© Hubert Czerepok

Hubert Czerepok
Devil’s Island

22 May – 26 July 2009

Opening: Friday 22 May 2009 at 6:30 pm.

Exhibition curator: Larys Frogier

Works produced by La Criée Centre
for Contemporary Art.
place Honoré Commeurec – halles centrales
35000 Rennes_France
la-criee [​at​]

La Criée Centre for Contemporary Art is very proud to introduce the first solo show in France of Hubert Czerepok, young Polish artist who takes a hard, thoughtful look at contemporary representations of power.

At the core of his oeuvre are the connections between fiction, topicality and historical events. It is not the facts themselves that interest the artist, but rather the way they begin with shifts, mutations, and unimaginable formal and semantic transformations.

Drawing, installation, video and photography: Czerepok’s strength lies in always choosing the most effective medium for each subject.

For Devil’s Island (2009), the video installation on show at La Criée, the artist visited the rocky islet off the coast of Kourou in French Guiana, famed for the penal colony to which many French political prisoners – including Alfred Dreyfus – were condemned. The images he brought back are projected onto a hexagonal sculpture referencing another form of disciplinary power: the Panopticon. Part of a circular prison building, the Panopticon allows full-time surveillance of prisoners without their knowing if they are being watched or not, the result being a sense of invisible omniscience. Designed by philosopher-jurist Jeremy Bentham in 1870, the Panopticon came under critical scrutiny in Michel Foucault’s book Discipline and Punish published in 1975. Using as his model the hexagonal Panopticon in the women’s prison in Rennes, France, Czerepok triggers in the exhibition space a maelstrom of images and a revolving of our gaze that turns the panopticon against itself.

The exhibition also includes a series of drawings, Seances, which brings together media images relating to some tragic current event, spiritualist seances or sexual scenes. The initial Seances series retained only a minimal trace of the originals, while the images made for the Rennes exhibition combine areas of flat black with line drawing. Here Czerepok pays tribute to Goya’s Disasters of War engravings and their demonstration of all the atrocious cruelty mankind is capable of. In this new look at glamorised, mass-produced media violence, the artist forces the image back into its genuinely traumatising, critical role.

The Devil’s Island exhibition comprises a highly diverse selection of works that lead us to reflect on different forms of power, the way they are depicted and the impact of this depiction on our lives.

In partnership with the Polish Cultural Institute, Paris

The exhibition Hubert Czerepok, Devil’s Island, is a part of the operation PLEIN SOLEIL / L’ETE DES CENTRES D’ART 09 (Out in the Sun: Summer in the Art Centres)

la criée centre for contemporary art

La Criée Centre for Contemporary Art
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