Laure Prouvost at MMK Frankfurt am Main

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Artist: Laure Prouvost

Exhibition title: all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:

Curated by: Anna Goetz

Venue: MMK Frankfurt am Main, Frankfurt am Main, Germany

Date: September 3 – November 6, 2016

Photography: ©Axel Schneider, images copyright and courtesy of the artist and MMK Frankfurt am Main

With her exhibition “all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:”, Laure Prouvost (b. 1978) has transformed the MMK 3 into a space-consuming environment. The point of departure for the artist’s first comprehensive solo presentation in Germany is a story she made up about her grandparents. As part of an art project, the grandfather—a satire on the heroic male artist figure—digs a tunnel, disappears in it, and never comes back. In the granddaughter’s account, the grandmother becomes the real protagonist who appropriates the artworks the grandfather has left behind, changes their function, and thus develops her own artistic approach.

This story, which Prouvost composed back in 2013 in the framework of her multi-award-winning work Wantee, serves her as a motif for her concern with the theme of escapism and the associated abandonment of socially established role models and value and order systems in favour of alternative, fantasy-based conceptions of the world.

Even before they enter the MMK 3 exhibition rooms, Prouvost calls upon the visitors to immerse themselves in her bizarre fantasy world with a monumental sign reading IDEALLY YOU WOULD LEAVE EVERYTHING BEHIND. Reference is then made to this request in the installations DEEP TRAVELS Ink. and On Our Way—both conceived especially for the Frankfurt show—in the entrance area. The visitor finds himself in a travel agency and becomes a player in a surreal scenario that puts him in the mood for the show, whose central themes are the longing for the unknown and submersion in remote worlds, escape from everyday life and the deliberate loss of the self in the hope of ultimately finding one’s way back to it. The entrance installation serves as a prologue to the main part of the presentation in the main hall.

Five video works are projected successively on five large screens. This choreography of images moreover encompasses light and sound installations. For the first time, Prouvost has here removed the films from their individual spatial settings and merged them to form a kind of dream world. She creates an environment that, on various sensory levels, casts a spell over the viewer. Props she has used in the videos turn up again in the exhibition room along with exotic plants surrounded by soil and artificial resin. The result is an overall atmosphere of dystopian character in which the boundary between fiction and reality becomes ever hazier.

Prouvost’s films always transcend the narrative level. She explores the seductive power of images, their illusory potential, and the immediate spatial dimension. In the exhibition she links the filmic space with the real. Particularly in Feeling the Walls, she creates an awareness of the exhibition architecture, which proves to be the chief protagonist of this sound and light installation. The artist investigates the interplay of image, sound, written text and language as a means of questioning conventions of perception.

The exhibition at the MMK 3 is the second and central chapter of a three-part survey that began at the end of June 2016 at Le Consortium, Dijon (France) with a labyrinthine structure entitled “Dropped here and then, to live, leave it all behind”. In Frankfurt, the story glides into a timeless world made up of parallel narrative threads. At the end of October 2016, at the Kunstmuseum Luzern (Switzerland), it will emerge again from darkness into light in a presentation called “and she will say: hi her, ailleurs to higher grounds …”. Although the show’s three venues share a common theme, each presentation also stands alone and offers its visitors a self-contained and independent exhibition experience.

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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Laure Prouvost, all behind, we’ll go deeper, deep down and she will say:, 2016, Installation view MMK, © Laure Prouvost, Courtesy of the Artist, photo: Axel Schneider

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