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exhibition: Dove Allouche: Three Seconds
dates: 27 February - 12 April 2014
Peter Freeman, Inc, New York, is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by French artist Dove Allouche. This is the artist’s first exhibition in the United States and follows a recent solo show at Paris’ Centre Pompidou.
At the core of the exhibition are three new series of large-scale drawings, all created in 2013; atmospheric and rendered in rich, sonorous gradations of blacks and grays, they are derived from rapid-fire photographs Allouche took while flying over Venezuela’s Salto Angel Falls. Allouche printed successive photographs onto drawing paper, very lightly so that there was little definition or contrast and then hand-applied chemicals and metallic powders to newly define the images’ values of light and dark, in effect “developing” the photographs through drawing. In the final step, now only able to perceive the underlying photographs from memory, he worked with a stick of graphite to draw out subtle time-lapse transitions from one image to the next, capturing the dissolution of the falls as they plummet 3,200 feet. As the drawings had each emerged from ghost-like image to lush definition, so too the subject transforms, its properties inverted by Allouche’s draftsmanship—roiling water gradually becomes mist, then cloud, as sky darkens abysmally. The chemical properties of the materials used will also undergo subtle changes over time: as solid turns to vapor, and vapor into solid, light areas will gradually darken and dark areas lighten.
Also included in the exhibition will be works from two related series “Chausse-trappe” (2012) and “Nos Lignes sous les obus toxiques [Our lines under the noxious bombshells]” (2012), both of which Allouche based on a found stereoscopic view of a 1917 French battlefield. Painstakingly working over the images with layers of india ink and graphite, Allouche removed contrast and obscured details, flattening the effect of depth and thereby heightening the desolation at the image’s core.
Complementing the several series of photo-inspired drawings are two new groups of actual photographs. For one, he revived the physautotype, a pre-Daguerre historical process using lavender oil dissolved in alcohol on silver plates. Using a process that had itself been lost (and so is now “unseen”), Allouche prints images rendering what cannot usually be seen at all: the surface of the sun (as first ever photographed by the Paris observatory in the 19th century).
Allouche’s “syntax of reproducibility” (as critic Phillipe-Alain Michaud has written) in which he masters and reinvents various mechanical processes by hand is enhanced by the poetic way in which the means of representation often become metaphors for what is happening within the image. Throughout his work, Allouche meticulously transcribes the otherwise imperceptible gradations by which the invisible becomes visible. Photography’s capture of the instantaneous and fleeting is placed in counterpoint to the very slow labor-intensive drawing methods through which Allouche explores its inherent properties of transfer, inversion, and reproduction.
Dove Allouche was born in 1972 in Paris and lives there now, working from a studio in the city’s historic Bateau-Lavoir building. He attended École Nationale d’Art de Cergy and has received international honors including a recent residency at the Villa Médicis in Rome (2011-2012) and grants from Villa Médicis-Hors les Murs (to work in Venezuela, 2006) and Programme à la carte (Norway, A.F.A.A, 2002). His work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at venues including Gaudel de Stampa (Paris, 2014), Nomas Foundation (Rome, 2012), and Galerie Kamm (Berlin, 2010), and has been included in many group exhibitions including “Réinventons le monde” (Sala Relalde, Bilbao, 2013), “Les détours de l’imaginaire” (Palais de Tokyo, Paris, 2012), “La commande contemporaine de la Chalcographie du Louvre” (Musée du Louvre, Paris, 2012), and “Estudio Abierto” (Palacio de Correos, Buenos Aires, 2006).
A reception for the artist will be held Thursday 27 February from 6 to 8 pm.
For reproduction requests, interviews with the artist and general inquiries, please contact the gallery at 212-966-5154 or firstname.lastname@example.org.