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Cabrita / Cerith Wyn Evans

The Mudam Collection and Pinault Collection in Dialogue

Two major works – a floor installation by Cabrita (b. 1956, Lisbon) from the Mudam Collection and a suspended sculpture by Cerith Wyn Evans (b. 1958, Llanelli) from the Pinault Collection – are placed in dialogue with one another. This display is the second part of a collaboration with the Pinault Collection, following the presentation of Danh Vo’s works in the Jardin des sculptures in 2019. This conversation takes light as its subject, focusing on the way light becomes both a material and dominant element in the work of these artists.

The fluorescent tube is a recurrent element in Cabrita’s work which employs an artistic vocabulary that includes found materials to construct sculptural assemblages that appear to bear traces of their places of origin. His sculptural work, À Propos des lieux d’origine #1 (About Places of Origin #1, 2005), is composed of raw building materials – steel and bricks – and neon lights connected by winding cables. The installation, whose open and closed rectilinear configuration approximates the walls of its original site, inscribes itself in the room, engendering a series of tensions. The evocative nature of the installation is incongruous with that of the ancillary space where it is installed and the heterogenous character of its materials also stands in opposition to the coherence of the architectural design. Within this context, the cold white light from the fluorescent tubes becomes equivalent to matter, drawing lines in space.

We are in Yucatan and every unpredicted thing, a 2012/2014 piece by Cerith Wyn Evans, is, through the poetic accents of its title, an invitation to another place. The work links a reference to the coastal state in the south east of Mexico with the refinement of Italian craftsmanship. The sculpture takes the form of a delicately crafted chandelier produced by the Galliano Ferro glass workshop in Murano. Its light intensity varies subtly according to the rhythm of a soundscape composed by Wyn Evans and featuring the sounds of machines and birds chirping. Wyn Evans’ work is characterised by a concern with the mechanisms of language, both verbal and non-verbal. A discreet, pulsating flicker describes a rhythm from an arrangement of recorded sound composed by the artist. This esoteric signal disrupts our perception of the object, Wyn Evans’ work – like Cabrita’s – affects the physical space around it and our visual sense of the work.