A visual journey through ten years of Denis Savary's exhibitions (first-ever retrospective catalogue).
“A book on Denis Savary is a scenario that makes it possible to document his work and put it into perspective. To achieve this, the artist has invited four art critics to contribute. Abraham Adams (USA), Stéphanie Moisdon (France) and Jan Verwoert (Germany) all present a highly personal approach to his work. Among other things, they discuss the unconscious mind, clandestine architecture and prayer (Adams); strange attractors, fetishes and replications (Moisdon); and the weather, the grotesque and magic (Verwoert). This handful of possible keywords opens up a number of avenues that echo the many fields the artist ventures into. The interview with Samuel Gross (Switzerland)—one of the most knowledgeable connoisseurs of Denis Savary's work—offers a more chronological account, which also served as the framework for the selection of illustrations. Indeed, this is intended to be a book of pictures, a visual journey through Savary's exhibitions specially put together for the occasion with the help of the Schaffter Sahli graphic design studio. The exhibition, in terms of both staging and narrative, is already a contextualisation of the work, while the book is a spatio-temporal navigation through ten years of exhibitions.”
Jean-Paul Felley & Olivier Kaeser
Published on the occasion of the exhibition “Jour blanc” at Centre Culturel Suisse, Paris, from January 22 to April 3, 2016.
Spanning a wide range of mediums, from drawing to video, performing arts to sculpture, the work of Denis Savary (born 1981 in Granges Marnand, Switzerland, lives and works in Lausanne) fictionalizes fragments of art and literature, and deals with historical figures such as Max Ernst, Oskar Kokoschka, Félix Vallotton, and Lautréamont. Savary's practice weaves narratives steeped in childhood fantasies and adult phantasmagoria, notably through a vision of exhibition as a domestic place that the spectator can inhabit.