25 September 2021 – 23 January 2022
The invisible dominates us with as much force or more than what is visible.
In his text, Plénitudes vides et espaces expérimentaux (Plenitudes, Voids, and Experimental Spaces), written for the catalog of the exhibition “Son et lumière” (Sound and Light) (Centre Pompidou, 2004), Douglas Kahn describes how the beginning of the 1950s was “a propitious moment for nothing to happen.” From Robert Rauschenberg to Guy Debord, Samuel Beckett, Jean-Paul Sartre, or John Cage, some of the greatest post-war artists and thinkers were questioning, in a way as radical as it was poetic and political, the notions of disappearance and emptiness, of nothingness.
Through effacement, discretion, the innovation of absence, silence, or the evanescence of things, it was a matter not only of breaking with the horrible noise of war, the vulgarity and aggression of the images and acts of a burgeoning consumerism, but also of imagining new contours for the artist, rethinking the forms and spaces through which the experience of artwork was being redefined and the common ties that bind us to space and time were being reinvented.
Developed around artists from the aesthetic revolutions of the 1960s, the Collection Lambert is thoroughly imbued with these innovative gestures which diverge from a subjectivity and an expressivity considered suspect, preferring instead the essence of exigent minimalistic forms, the poetry of a fleeting appearance in rooms bathed in light, and the spirituality of the discreet mark left on the canvas by a brush saturated with white. So many seemingly fragile forms, as if suspended in space and time, their vital force manifesting in discretion, allowing everything around them to exist as well.
Beyond this, the question of our relationship with absence, disappearance, and the memory of forms and beings through their representation surges up almost imperceptibly. These ghostly presences tell us what remains in the world after the presaged disappearance is experienced. A few forms, a handful of images, persist here and now in a tension that is constantly renewed by our bodies and minds visiting the spaces they inhabit.
In a little while
I’ll be gone
The moment’s already passed
Yeah it’s gone
And I’m not here
This isn’t happening
I’m not here
I’m not here…
Radiohead, How to Disappear Completely and Never Be Found
Carl Andre, Shusaku Arakawa, Robert Barry, James Bishop, Christian Boltanski, Marcel Broodthaers, Robert Wilson et Lucinda Childs, Christo, Daniel Gustav Cramer, Daniel Dezeuze, Spencer Finch, Nan Goldin, Douglas Gordon, Loris Gréaud, Jeppe Hein, Douglas Huebler, On Kawara, Thierry Kuntzel, Bertand Lavier, Sol LeWitt, Robert Mangold, Christian Marclay, Brice Marden, Adam McEwen, Piet Moget, Jonathan Monk, Rei Naito, Rika Noguchi, Roman Opałka, Dennis Oppenheim, Robert Ryman, Fred Sandback, Andres Serrano, Pauline Tralongo, Cy Twombly