The new exhibition at the Frac Franche-Comté is devoted to Roman Signer. Born in Switzerland in 1938, on a European continent prey to the fury of a war that deeply affected him, the artist is known worldwide for his actions in which he uses explosives, but also natural phenomena such as the force of wind or water, to create “micro-spectacles or non-events”: furtive and nevertheless magical moments of deflagrations, falls or flights that he tries to capture through photography or video and to which he gives an extension in the form of sculptures and installations. The whole is part of a body of work that the artist describes as a “sculpture of time”.
Around a few works dating from before 2020, notably Klavier (2010) which recently entered the Frac’s collections, or videos of actions which retrace the artist’s career, the exhibition
Tombé du ciel brings together a number of previously unseen works that are the result of a process leading to
the transformation of poor materials and the collision of everyday objects (cans, umbrellas, tables, kayaks, hats, vehicles, etc.): proposals that take sculpture into the realm of experimentation and its corollaries – randomness, accident, danger, catastrophe, etc. The works that make up the exhibition suggest or implement movement. They evoke the premises, the expectation and the results of a dynamic process that sometimes seems to defy the laws of physics. Something has happened, is happening or will happen at the heart of these works, which are part of improbable and absurd narratives, challenging both our society of the spectacle and our world marked by the ideology of progress and the outrageous quest for performance.
The exhibition thus pays tribute to an artist whose work renewed the tradition of performance art and had a profound effect on a whole generation of artists such as Fischli and Weiss or Erwin Wurm,
Since the early 1970s, he has continued to question sculpture in the light of time.