Artists: Messgewand and Robuche
Exhibition title: Where is Rolly?
Venue: Everyday Gallery, Antwerp, Belgium
Date: October 16 – November 27, 2021
Photography: Silvia Cappellari, Seppe Elewaut / all images copyright and courtesy of the artists and Everyday Gallery, Antwerp
In their first duo exhibition Where is Rolly?, artists duo’s Messgewand and Robuche tell the tale of objects’ former life. By blending both artistic practices, they create a new look at our societal waste. Works made out of reshaped objects and depictions of thrown-out trash fill the space. Salvaged functional objects and other works will be on view from 16 October till 20 November at Everyday Gallery.
For their first collaborative exhibition, Where is Rolly?, the artist duo’s take a playful “Where is Wally?” (Martin Handford) approach upon our societal waste. In the current mindset of critical thinking towards our climate and a huge movement towards recycling (e.g. thrifting), the duo constructs a new vision by reshaping found objects.
Their take with “Where is Rolly?” seems to be fit. As “rolly” is a word of nonsense, so is the material they work with: objects found on the streets, in charity shops or in abandoned spaces. The nonsense of our living environment. It’s a subtle and playful joke at our wasteful consumerism behavior. As the title associates with the search for Wally, this search for reused objects isn’t the case for the duo’s work. Although there is a flood of waste present in the work of these artists, they search for a new tale to live by. Through showcasing our current pile of capitalistic waste in a reformed matter, one can see a subtle criticism on our environmental way of living. More notable is the search to find a new way of living with our current state of piled-up trash.
Strolling through the exhibition, the visitor can ferret through fragments of the creative world of Messgewand and Robuche. The room is filled with works that move between pop cultural quips and subtle surrealist sleights at lightning speed. And with seeming ease, the sculptural objects and sculptural paintings combine wildly diverging production methods like laser cutting, brightly colored plexiglass, and enamel clay.
With a background in design and art, it’s no wonder how Messgewand and Robuche can remold found objects. Storytelling pieces are covered in layers of paint, deformed with foam, and fused back together. In this duo show, the artists play around the border between design and art.
The Robuche duo artists Javier Rodriguez and Lou Buche were educated at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy and the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam. The two artists of Messgewand, Romain Coppin and Alexis Bondoux, studied in France and have been publicated in Vogue Italia, Dezeen, Pink Essay, Pin-Up and other magazines.