Digestive disaster, Lucky Star
Jack Brennan, Tom Hallet, Leo Luccioni, Sarah Margnetti, Omsk Social Club, Florian Reither, Nicolas Stolarczyk, Urara Tsuchiya, Amber Vanluffelen & Stef Van Looveren
Stems Gallery is pleased to invite you to the opening of Digestive Disaster, Lucky Star, a group show curated by Maurane Colson and Marion Denné. The show will feature eighteen works, including performances, paintings, drawings and sculptures. Seventeen were produced especially for the occasion. Including works by Jack Brennan, Tom Hallet, Leo Luccioni, Sarah Margnetti, Omsk Social Club, Florian Reither, Nicolas Stolarczyk, Urara Tsuchiya, Amber Vanluffelen and Stef Van Looveren.
We’re setting 2020 off with a dinner party, spiritual nourishment in a white cube. Dining is the symbol of society’s conspicuous consumption, self-indulgence or excess. For this meal, we would like to focus on the rituals that go with it, togetherness created over a meal. Dining is a performance that spans only as long as people eat and can never be replicated in the same form. 1
We have invited artists to be our guests at the table, and deal with the concept of a dinner party where the main matter is of sociality and conviviality, to join in pleasure by presenting transdisciplinary work.
The show features eighteen works, of which seventeen were made especially for this DINNER occassion.
It starts with Brennan’s basket of madeleines (16); a foundry was built on the gallery’s terrace where Brennan casts scrap aluminium into aluminium pastry, evoking YouTube « maker » and « prepper » cultures, as well as sterotypes of « women’s work » and « men’s work».
« To Matthew » (3) captures the violence that was inflicted on Matthew Wayne Shepard during a cold October evening in 1998. The only portions of his face not covered in blood were those that had been streaked clean by his tears.1 With fine lines, Hallet narrates the brutality of this hate-crime into a fairy martyr. Flowers bloom in a surreal swamp setting.
While the Old Testament spared Daniel from being fed by the lions (5), Luccioni gives him a whole other fate. Daniel is depicted in the skull and bones in front of the lions marking the underlying evidence of the ferocity that belongs to our consumer culture. Rubens and Luccioni highlighted this dramatical event in the chiaroscuro and fierceness of the lions gazes looking at the spectator, making us feel part of (being) the diner.
Stolarczyk’s fantasies emerge from organic embroideries and deal with knitted constructions. Here the precious is plastic. Made in China scales or industrial-hybrid skins. This duality is twisted in a game of attitudes and faces a fantasy-derived nocturnal chimera (4) with neither head nor tale.
Urara Tsuchya seizes upon personal conversations from her tinder account, transcribing them onto a ceramic dining set (10). What are the boundaries between humans interacting on dating apps? Is it awkward to be offered an experience of non-duality through psychedelic orgasms by an unknown straight male you just virtually met?
The fireplace connects the interior and exterior of a building and therefore symbolises Hestia, Goddess of the hearth, home, and domesticity. The depicted body leans towards the viewer and functions as the supporting structure of the fireplace. (11) Margnetti uses her own body as study material and, through the use of trompe-l’oeil, renders the faux-marble that gives surface to the skin and veins.
Omsk Social Club have created an intuitive gaming board (7) that acts as a constellation of aesthetic artistic objects, and offering a gateway into their conceptual practice of Real Game Play. “Love Cry” is based on the surreal and the spiritual rather than the rational or rule-governed. Helena Dietrich will activate the board game with tarot card reading through the evening, you are invitated to join her.
Playfully mimicking our social conducts along with their visual culture, “EAT ME OUT” (14) is a surreal mirror image. Performativity, an elaborate and spectacular entertainment: the sculpture is a dystopic pageant. Stef Van Looveren questions sexuality and fluïdity through colour and form. The body wanders in a paradisiacal sea without personality.
Amber Vannuffelen performs tibetan meditation crossed with ballroom culture and taking in elements of basketball. A spiritual practice becomes a method to create a platform (12) between reality and personal fantasies, through these, the search for realness is present. Kaede, Suzume, Carpré, Sendoh, Ina Iagu and Rita are cosplayers that will spin tonight.
“You look me like” (2) is the wild card and can be an extremely beneficial, or an extremely harmful, element.
Chestnut flour, wheat flour, ground almonds, rye flour, cornmeal, cocoa powder, red pepper, suger and eggs. Ten jars of honey, oil and milk. A quintal of dates and bananas. 2
1 KOCZANOWICZ, D., “Beyond Taste: Daniel Spoerri’s art of feasting”, Performance Research, 22, 7, 2017.
2 MARINETTI, F. T., The Futurist Cookbook, London: Penguin Books, 1989.