«To Stay Alive» at Palais de Tokyo: welcome to Michel Houellebecq's

«You don’t stand a chance. Continue?» Here are pixelised words to welcome us from a desolated image into a maze of photographs in the dark.

French writer and movie director Michel Houellebecq is also a photographer and curator of an exhibition showcasing his mental palace. In his own world, fiction meets biography, essay meets anticipation. He creates like no other those vivid images of our time with its angst, its vice and the head-on hypothesis of a no-future.

Here are Daniel and Esther from The Possibility of an Island in a liquid format next to Houellebecq’s dog, ex-wife and friends. Between a room dedicated to Clément (the dog) and Robert Combas’ erratic and fascinating installation La Pièce de Vie, an intimate film with Iggy Pop’s voice is set opposite a backroom showing porn. Floors covered in postcard echo to Paltform’s heavy satire of mass tourism while extracts from Houellebecq directed movie The Possibility of an Island draw a red thread.

For aficionados, shrinks and insiders only.

Illustration © Araso

Rester Vivant une exposition de Michel Houellebecq, au Palais de Tokyo du 23 Juin au 11 Septembre 2016.

Cai Guo-Qiang à la Fondation Cartier présente une fresque inédite à la poudre de canon

Animals take over the Cartier Foundation

This morning the Cartier Foundation in Paris unveiled its upcoming exhibition, an ambitious, protean and compelling project entitled The Great Animal Orchestra. A handpicked art selection as we love them at the Foundation, inspired by the work of musician and bio acoustician Bernie Krause, whose name may not be on everybody’s lips but who’s collaborated with the greatest such as the Doors, Van Morrison, Polanski, Coppola and their likes.

At the crossroads of music and science, Bernie records the voices of animals and micro-organisms. A dive into the darkness of the Foundation’s will give you a better grasp of his work, whilst the groundfloor showcases a agrarian atmosphere thanks to a combination of wooden panels and terra cotta bricks.

There, a giant gunpowder fresco by Cai Guo-Qiang revists cave art. The Wild becomes the curator in the exhibited paintings, photographs, videos and it is just fabulous. In the gardens, French Nouvelle Vague filmmaker Agnes Varda creates a very intimate theatre in a cabin. We highly recommend this show to all audiences.  

Pictures © Araso

Practical details:

The Great Animal Orchestra
Fondation Cartier pour l’Art Contemporain, 261 Boulevard Raspail, Paris
2 July 2016 > 8 January 2017
Tuesday-Sunday from 11am to 8pm
Tuesdays until 10pm

Metallica for Brioni

Breaking news: Brioni rocks

Italian luxury menswear brand Brioni (Kering group) unveiled yesterday its new campaign starring Metallica in highly curated black & white photos, but with a touch of humour.

Here’s to the marketing genius of Justin O’Shea, the man the fashion sphere adores : with his hipster rocker look,  showing tatoos and a model for a girlfriend, Justin is on top of his game. A star buyer for german e-commerce business Mytheresa.com, he’s been appointed artistic director of Brioni last March, rocking the world of the traditional, uber-classical  mensuit brand.

Before Justin, Brioni’s campaigns used to look like this or even that in a desperate attempt to appeal to Asia. With this new positioning directly aimed at its core clientele and a strong disruptive idea rather than an army of so-called social campaign, Justin nailed it.

Visuals © Brioni website, Mettallica Instagram

Julien-Henri Vu Van Dung pour Thomas Lebrun

Thomas Lebrun brings Paris Conciergerie back to life

The former jail of Conciergerie de Paris is where the magic happened on the night of June 16th. French choreographer Thomas Lebrun recreated his sublime show for 12 dancers, Où chaque souffle danse nos mémoires (literally meaning: «Where every breath dances our memoirs») originally thought of for Monuments en Mouvement’s 2015 edition.

After a quick blink at Clément Dazin‘s unforgettable juggling on Mont Saint-Michel in March, we were already totally excited by Monuments en Mouvement’s 2016 batch. THAT, was the apotheosis.

A mind-blown, very moved American spectator came up to me at the end of the show. She’s from Philadelphia where her son, who specializes in post-traumatic architecture, is building a memorial.  What amazed her in the choreography was «the intensity in the dancers eyes; it tells so much about this place’s history». She further comments: «I don’t have all the references and there are some moves that I didn’t understand. But it was beautiful, so compelling… I will never forget what I saw.»

Video © Araso

Emilie Incerti Formentini dans Rendez-vous Gare de l'Est

Our heart beats for this Rendez-vous Gare de l'Est

A girl, a chair, and let the show begin. Rendez-vous gare de l’Est is a monologue written and staged by French playwright Guillaume Vincent. Outstanding actress Emilie Incerti Formentini has been playing this bipolar lady since 2012, when the show premiered at Comédie de Reims.

It’s all in the acting. This life hoping from one internment at Saint-Anne, (Paris’ renowned psychiatric hospital) to the next, the handfuls of lithium, the husband, the (literally) crazy love, the eleven square metres flat with its bathroom in the corridor.

Emily has both a sharp sens of humour and a tenacious morale. The problem with crazy people is they have those moments of rare intelligence, of supreme lucidity which makes them fascinating.

We just love this girl for walking us through a short hour of intelligence, delicacy and joy.

Rendez-vous gare de l’Est, au Théâtre du Rond-Point

Du 31 Mai au 26 Juin

Illustration © Araso

Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker Illustration

Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker: "La Nuit Transfigurée", a lesson of romanticism

What is romanticism? Is it all in the past? For Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker it starts with a naked set and the raw light of the moon. Then two men and a woman. Jules and Jim transfigured by Schönberg’s 1899 music sheet. She whispers to his hear that he’s not the child’s father.

Her vintage flowery pink dress is too small for her though it’s an extra large size. Her beauty, her knife-cut fringe, her palish skin and naked face are simply fascinating. And when her partner starts to move we’re just crazy in love.

It is magnificent, forty-five minutes of ecstatic danse flying too fast through the public’s emotion-dyed eyes. The posture of the man standing, with the girl’s thighs pressed around his face is one of the most unforgettable images ever. This is not a show. This is an Austrian lake lost somewhere in the dark.

Romanticism is this wild animal that will get you drunk if you can tame it.

Illustration © Araso

Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker – La Nuit Transfigurée au Théâtre de la Ville – Paris – Du 7 au 15 Juin 2016