Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Cheap Art: Fred Eerdekens' Shadow Words

(by Fred Eerdekens)

I'm a huge fan of art that incorporates text. I guess that's not so surprising for a writer, but from mail art to Mel Bochner, I can't get enough of wordy art. That's why I was so excited to see Fred Eerdekens' simple and stunning exhibit "Remanences" at Magda Danysz Gallery in the 11e arrondissement.

Eerdekens contorts wire, string or clothing (whatever he has on hand) to create forms that, when viewed in shadow or reflected below in a pool of water, transform as if by magic into succinct, poignant phrases or sentences.

The gallery was undergoing construction when I visited and when I entered the above room, I assumed that I'd wandered into a blank space. But not so - small and slight pieces of wire were suspended above blocks of wood that contained just enough water to reflect phrases like "last sunrise" or "don't think again."

So this unintelligeable blob:

... reveals this elegance:

Eerdekens' method goes beyond the use of negative space - he uses negative light to communicate, creating a situation where the viewer must engage in order to see and understand, nudging their body forward and forward until an image appears. It's clever, cool and damned elegant.

While you're at the gallery, don't miss Eerdekens' watercolors too, which have by turns an immediate and manic quality and a somber, minimalist depth.

Fred Eerdekens, "Remanences"
Through Saturday, 15 June
Magda Danysz Gallery
78 Rue Amelot  75011 Paris
Métro: M5 to Richard Lenoir, M8 to Saint-Sébastien-Froissart

(All art above by Fred Eerdekens)

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