systm soupir by Lou Masduraud
from Sept. 18th to Dec 11th, 2021
at Maison populaire, Montreuil (FR)
For systm soupir, her first solo exhibition in France, Lou Masduraud transforms the Maison populaire art centre into an alleyway bathed in an artificial night. Under the heavy light of sodium-vapour lamps, the exhibition space dons the air of an indeterminate public space. A silent thoroughfare in which the body stands to attention, on the alert. In this suspended nocturnal scene, sounds rebound and voices deepen. Shadows lengthen as the hours pass. Beneath the thick, dense orange of this dead-end alley, clues appear: openings, traps, pipes, and architectural distortions. They represent all manner of snags in the walls of this decor, that whisper to those passers-by who are willing to come closer and hear stories from beyond reality.
As often in the work of Lou Masduraud, the representation of normative spaces (such as the street, office, or home) and the reinterpretation of forms that spectacularise public facilities (such as fountains and street lights) serve as pretexts for a shift into fantasy. Here, Montreuil’s public lighting, reinvested by the artist, expands the walls and projects its exaggerated scale onto the works in the exhibition. By borrowing the look of an urban layout, the exhibition reveals the hypothesis of a reversal: including emancipatory practices within the heart of a space characterised by insecurity and predation for women’s and minorities’ bodies.
photo credits: Aurélien Mole
graphic design: Roxanne Maillet
This project is made possible thanks to the curatorial residency of Maison populaire, with the support of Ministère de la Culture - DRAC Île-de-France, Conseil régional d’Île-de-France and Conseil départemental de la Seine-Saint-Denis.