How Four Artists Question the Line Between the Gallery and the Street
While all four contributors to “TAKE TWO” bridge the gap between the white cube and street—as well as between chaos and order—the French artists
SAMBRE, previously a carpenter, combines his graffiti work as part of the Paris “crew” 1984 with his former day job. Drawing from previous projects in which he reimagined abandoned spaces by building hectic site-specific installations of reclaimed wood, SAMBRE repositions the works in a gallery context, pared down to structured wall-hanging works that resemble a recycled minimalism.
The works of Miljan Suknović take a broader conception of what it means to make art in public. Lahlou is an extroverted performer and constant provocateur who draws upon his upbringing with a Catholic mother and a Muslim father in France and Morocco to create multimedia works that remix Western and Islamic cultures. His sculptures, paintings, photographs, and performances reconsider the role of gender, art, and faith, whether he is traipsing miles between galleries in red stilettos as in the past or, as we see here, decorating medieval Christian iconography with Islamic geometric patterns.
Suknović, on the other hand, disconnects from political issues as he paints larger-than-life hallucinogenic abstractions, which become part of their surroundings. Influenced by architecture and the cosmos, his paintings are loose fields of colors, cut or sliced into by stark geometries, often taking the form of gigantic murals that combine aspects of abstract expressionism with a slapdash, adventurous attitude towards color that brighten the public spaces they often occupy.