The art of Robert Wilson goes far beyond the theatre stage.
Pioneer of the experimental theatre, Wilson tackled most creative disciplines in the course of his half-decade career from costume design to sculpture and furniture. Fascinated by the contrast between the lightness and the extreme, a key element of all his artistic production, in 1994 Robert Wilson approached glass making and refined his skills at the Centre International de Recherche sur le Verre et les Arts plastiques (CIRVA) in Marseille. During the FIAC, French gallerist and collector François Laffanour presented nine years of Wilson‘s glassworks realized at CIRVA between 1994 and 2003, on display till November 5th at Galerie Downtown in Paris.
The collection reflects a keen understanding of sublimely monolithic and geometric form but also the deeply dramatic implementation of spectrum hues that light through glass can achieve. It is the same collision of material and force that the grand master continuously employs in theatre. Motionless, the vessels somehow carry the gestures of glassmakers, and those of the assistants during the working process, like invisible memories hidden within the small cracks and irregular textures. Focusing on the pieces’s pure shapes, François Laffanour created a minimalistic showcase that perfectly highlights the tactile appeal of the vases and emphasize their magnetic visual power.
“I like the strictness of the curved line as it is seen in geometry. There are only 2 lines: curved and straight.That is a part of classical construction: buildings/trees, protagonist/antagonist. Time for me is a line that goes from the center of the earth to the heavens. Space is a horizontal line. This cross is the basic architecture of everything. It is the stripe of Barnett Newman, a piano key being played, the drip of milk in a Vermeer painting, or Jesus Christ on a cross. Robert Mapplethorpe’s photographs are based on the vertical and the horizontal, or a triangle that can be drawn from the top center to the edges of the bottom.” – Robert Wilson