February 2011 - Return to Marienbad


Bussy St Martin, Domaine de Rentilly

Variant of October 2008 – Return to Marienbad (2008).
Video installation for a video projector and a pair of binoculars.
One video, 64 mn.

The presentation of October 2008 – Return to Marienbad was revised for the Chambres sourdes exhibition. Taking advantage of the view from the second floor rooms of the Château de Rentilly, which give onto the castle’s ponds and park, the installation was set up so as to create a dialogue between the video images and the landscape outdoors, brought to life by visitors. Able to take in both sights at once, the spectator can appreciate the range of correspondences to its full extent.

Filters were put on the bedroom windows so as to darken the projection space and to play down the colors of the park, in reference to the film’s black and white aesthetic. The mirror placed on the floor, over which the video was initially projected, was moved against another wall in the room to re-establish a certain reality in the film’s images (the shots in the video perform many inversions of the original work); if the spectator so desires, he can consider the reflected images by turning his back to the projection surface. But it is even more the windows of the room, which look onto the park’s ponds, that enable the presence of the missing object to be re-established and that restore a certain memory of Alain Resnais and Alain Robbe-Grillet’s work, as well as of the video’s first presentation in October 2008 at the Galerie la Ferronnerie, by creating a factitious inversion of the video’s images.

Placed in front of one of the room’s two windows, a pair of binoculars invite the spectator to consider a bench at the other end of the park, where the piece Through the Looking Glass is presented. While introducing an allusion to the dramaturgical structure of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining (which constitutes the principal reference of the Cracks in the Landscape series, featured in the installation both inside and outside of the castle), the binoculars invite the spectator to visit Through the Looking Glass in order to relive the experience proposed within the projection room, but this time without the video images. The visitor is thus incited to pass through the film’s borders, to travel along the reflective surface of Alain Resnais and Alain Robbe-Grillet’s film, and to lose himself in the labyrinthine twists and turns created by the installation.

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Copyright © 2016 Laurent Fiévet