The fall art season is upon us, and gallery-goers have been flocking to the neighborhoods of the Marais, Belleville, and Saint-Germain as openings fill their autumn agendas. Here are ARTINFO France's picks of some of the most promising shows of the season.
"Piège pour un Voyeur" at Galerie Patricia Dorfmann
The group show "Piège pour un Voyeur" ("Trap for a Voyeur") is a titillating take on sex in the nostalgic tones of the 1970s, when everything was open to debate. The main piece, "Piège pour un Voyeur," is a neon cage by Michel Journiac that sparked heated controversy in 1969, when the openly gay artist exhibited himself naked inside it (the first time a Parisian gallery showed the body of a naked man in the flesh). Rebecca Bournigault's pornography-inspired watercolors depict expressions of pleasure. Overall, "Piège pour un Voyeur" brings an element of existentialist philosophy to carnal pleasure, eliminating both puritanism and indifference. Through September 24.
Candida Höfer and Vincent Ganivet at Galerie Yvon Lambert
The two concurrent shows at Yvon Lambert speak to each other in playful and meaningful ways. German photographer Candida Höfer's photographs of Berlin's Neues Museum and buildings in Naples and Seville interpret classical architecture as both fullness and emptiness. Alongside these images, French sculptor Vincent Ganivet's twisted concrete arches serve as a clever echo. His charming fountain-sinks are filled with dishes — sculptural scenes of domestic chaos. But he renders the flow of water as little ceramic bells and jars with lacy edges. Through October 9.
Xavier Veilhan at Galerie Emmanuel Perrotin
In a departure from his geo-cubist shapes, Xavier Veilhan's new work includes an impressive rope sculpture that looks like a flying conceptual piano, a mobile reminiscent of Calder but larger than life (watch your head!), and an installation that includes soft couches where gallery-goers can rest. Flower arrangements and drawings and paintings of birds create a calm rustic atmosphere amid the straight lines of the sculptures. Through November 12.
Marc Turlan at Galerie Anne de Villepoix
For some years now, Marc Turlan has been manipulating fashion photography, adding metal tears or masks that recall the Phantom of the Opera. "Exo-Star," his first solo show at Anne de Villepoix, also includes his sculpture. In a separate room, the artist has curated a selection of recordings of statements by authors such as Marguerite Duras and Arthur Miller that accompany his meditation on the ambiguity of beauty. Through October 15.
Diogo Pimentão at Schleicher + Lange
Every piece in Portuguese artist Diogo Pimentão's exhibition seems to have its shape and place through some inexorable logical necessity. Drawings and collages on the walls accompany the mysterious shapes that evoke mathematics and geometry. Through October 29.
Not Vital at Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac
Swiss artist Not Vital works in China five months out of the year and has found elegant connections and double meanings for his new work that link his Western and Chinese experiences. He created two versions of his imposing sculpture "Adam, One Afternoon": one was made of steel from a Beijing foundry and polished by hand, while the other was shaped from plaster, his favorite medium. Another work, "Piz Nair" ("Black Mountain" in Romansh) is a three-foot high peak sculpted from coal, which plays on perception by recalling both a mountainous peak and a small pile of coal such as that used by Chinese families for heat. Through October 15.
Dewar & Gicquel at Galerie Loevenbruck
Some materials melt and bend at 2200 degrees — others don't. The artist duo Dewar & Gicquel plays on these properties for their sculptural experiments at Galerie Loevenbruck, re-firing vases and other ceramics in a special oven to create an archeology of industrial manufacturing. One wood sculpture features a phallic shape on a saddle, and several woven tapestries add to the hand-made and eclectic nature of this intriguing show. Through October 15.
Jim Shaw at Galerie Praz-Delavallade
Playing with readers' absorption and ways of looking, American artist Jim Shaw has created a series of comics based on the fictitious religion O-ism, complete with time-traveling superheroes. In one wall-painting, obelisks protrude from a post-apocalyptic landscape. In the show's strongest and final part, comic book characters and themes are mixed in with illustrations of gothic architecture. Lively, creative, and not to be missed. Through October 29.
Melik Ohanian at Galerie Chantal Crousel
Christian Marclay isn't the only video artist playing with time. Last February and March, French artist Melik Ohanian installed a traveling camera on train tracks outside a workers' camp near Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates. It moved 100 meters a day, capturing four minutes of life on film at regular intervals. The project was commissioned for the Sharjah Biennial but was ultimately never shown there, after unexpected difficulties and the firing of Biennial director Jack Persekian led Ohanian to return to Paris. Now the film is being shown for the first time at Chantal Crousel — a powerful accumulation of random and sometimes haunting moments. Through October 8.
To see images of the work from Paris's fall season, click on the slide show at the left.[content:advertisement-center]