Danilo Dueñas at Villa du Parc and Juan Fernando Herrán at La Halle des bouchers
As part of the France-Colombia 2017 program, the two French contemporary art centers of La Villa du Parc and La Halle des Bouchers are pleased to host the first solo shows in France of two major artists from Colombia’s art scene, Danilo Dueñas in Annemasse and Juan Fernando Herrán in Vienne.
Danilo Dueñas: The Reparation of Vision
Curator: Garance Chabert, Director of Centre d’art contemporain la Villa du Parc
La Villa du Parc, the contemporary art center of Annemasse—the city bordering Geneva—is featuring the first solo show in France of Danilo Dueñas (b. 1956, lives and works in Bogotá). Called The Reparation of Vision, the show is entirely conceived and produced for the Villa du Parc galleries and the context of a French setting. It blends objects having a strong cultural connotation (the French billiard, the Persian rugs, the Swiss abstract sculptures) and salvaged materials collected around the art center’s specific geographic and institutional location.
Dueñas’s art is suffused with the artist’s strong sympathy for the world around him. Objects that are observed, found, salvaged, and assembled form the basis of a practice that assumes many forms, i.e., pictures, sculptures, and installations. Taking into account the context of both the architecture and the exhibition as a work in itself is an approach that gradually came to dominate his art as Dueñas broadened the conditions of visibility, interaction, and balance between his pieces.
Reparation of Vision is indeed the announced intention of Dueñas’ exhibition at Villa du Parc: “Therefore the reparation of vision is trying to be vigilant in the before. The before is ours, it is the world’s possibility, which we must nourish and feed. Taking account of color, of layers, of time in the gaze.” (Danilo Dueñas)
Well known in Latin America and the United States, Danilo Dueñas has also regularly shown in Germany, where he was the guest artist of the DAAD Gallery in 2011. His work is seen in the most important art institutions of Colombia, where he is also a professor at the Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá. He is represented by the galleries Casas Riegner in Bogotá and Thomas Schulte in Berlin. His work is currently exhibited in Pivo (São Paulo, Brazil) during the summer and he is also invited as an artist-in-residence by the Frac Pays de la Loire in Carquefou (France) between October and December 2017.
Juan Fernando Herrán: La Pierre et la Poussière (Stone and Dust)
Curator: Marc Bembekoff, Director of Centre d’art contemporain La Halle des bouchers
For his first major solo exhibition in Europe, Juan Fernando Herrán (b. 1963, lives and works in Bogotá) proposes at Centre d’art contemporain La Halle des bouchers a site-specific project based on the age-old sedimentation of the city of Vienne.
If materials and archeological objects’ study is the key to allow him to interpret the past, it also reveals and testifies the way present is grounded in History. Juan Fernando Herrán’s works address issues that acknowledge a crossing of cultural backgrounds with societal subjects not always visible at first sight. For his Vienne project, the artist got interested in tracing out and questioning the archeological and patrimonial material of the city, and the way sedimentation has shaped its history. While investigating on the now abandoned former Abbey of Saint-André-le-Haut, built on an ancient Roman site, used at some time as a cemetery, then confiscated at the French Revolution to be later transformed into a housing facility (that lasted until the late 1990s), Juan Fernando Herrán reveals history cycles and our constant re-use of past elements. Such perpetual shifting is a way for him to explore the notions of hidden memory, inherent violence and sovereignty rooted in ideological and social changes along history. This research has enriched an installation project—including sculpture, video and photography—which inhabits the contemporary art center’s space.