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Christine Maigne

Christine Maigne (France)

White pulse / 2016

A white mass unfolds on the ground and imposes itself in the darkness. When you walk around, you are attracted and fascinated by its rhythmic and organic pulsation that digs and swells its surface to the sound of a kind of breath. The mineral and granular material seems to breathe, it diffracts the light, sometimes containing it, and returns scattered splinters.

White Pulse is a video installation in which the projection on the ground adheres to a carpet of salt. The video projection seems absorbed by the material and melts in it so that the light seems to emanate from it. The virtual movement that is created, made up of shadows and patterns of powdery white matter, seems without scale and precise reference and leaves open the interpretation of the nature of the phenomenon. We can perceive natural organic manifestations, a synthetic membrane that comes alive, or even geological movements. This indistinctness creates confusion that confers upon the work a disturbing relation to the natural.

In the continuity of her work, Christine Maigne apprehends with “White pulse” generic organic phenomena, such as her shoots and development of elementary stems, holes, blisters or spots… A first version of this work was presented at NextLevel Gallery in 2016.

White pulse

Christine Maigne comes from a region of volcanoes, it should not be forgotten. She knows that the earth doesn’t only turn – e pur si muove – it can also sometimes explode, flow, eject gas, and transform itself into a fountain of lava. There is something subversively eruptive in her works. There is also the singular power of the appearance of White Pulse, which could be seen recently in a gallery on Rue Charlot in Paris.

You enter a dark room that a recorded breath fills. Does this panting seem familiar? Error. It rises from very far away. In the dark, a powdery white rectangle stands out. Beneath this apparently calm lake, the matter is busy with something. It seems to rise up against itself. An edgeless thrust beats it into its own area. This palpitation combined with formal purity composes an imaginative world at the edge of the representation. One thinks of primitive soup in its magical cauldron. How did life appear? Its birth, when you think about it, has something almost as stunning as the big bang. The sleep of volcanoes engenders reveries of gas, fiery fountains, but also of muted activity, magnetic currents, underground connections, and elementary budding.

According to the legend, Empedocles, at the summit of Mount Etna, threw himself into the burning entrails. Was he tired of living? A mystery. Christine Maigne opted for a justification for life. White Pulse is an intimate work that speaks to us of something more interior than interiority itself. We must imagine Empedocles reaching the summit of a cold volcano, invigorated by his ascent, his pulse becoming regular, regaining his breath, coming back to life.

Philippe Arnaud

Portrait by Laurence Godart

Christine Maigne works on the notions of growth and organicity at different scales and in different contexts. Her installations have been shown in France and abroad, especially in Montreal (“The Garden” with the Vox Gallery, the “Gardening Lesson” at Articule or “Eruption” in Dare Dare). Her personal exhibitions have often been the occasion to carry out projects in situ that encompass the entire space, such as her “Implants” to “L’H du Siège” in Valenciennes during a residency exhibition in 2005, “Rémanence” in The Artothèque de Caen in 2010, or “Le bug”, a video installation created with the Art Space Camille Lambert in Juvisy-sur-Orge in 2006. She was also the author of several public works, “The Field of Experiences” in Anger in 2001, “Eclosion” in the garden of a school in Normandy in 2012 which was presented at the Journées du Patrimoine in 2015, and which links plant patterns to raw concrete elements, “Cupules” in the garden of a school in Essonne in 2012, or this year “Raies” in Orly, an indoor project. In her workshop, she has developed a more intimate work that was presented in her personal exhibition “In Vitro” at NextLevel Gallery in 2014.

More information :

EXHIBITION 16th March to 1st April
Salle Gilbert Gaillard
2 rue Saint-Pierre, Clermont-Ferrand
Tuesday to Saturday : 10am to noon & 1pm to 5pm
Sunday : 2pm to 6pm

Salle Gilbert Gaillard