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展览名称 Title: 共同的记忆——摄影作品第二季La mémoire collective 

艺术家 Artist: 杉本博司Hiroshi Sugimoto、常易Christian Chambenoit、张巍Zhang Wei

策展人 Curator: Je Young Professionals

展览时间 Duration : 2017.9.13 - 2017.10.19

主办方 Host: 杜若云章画廊 Je Fine Art Gallery Shanghai

展览地址 Venue: 上海市徐汇区永嘉路498号  498 Yong Jia Road, Shanghai 

入场费Admission | 30 RMB(周二-周五) 35 RMB(周末) 268 RMB(会员-购票即日起,一年免费观看画廊所有展览)

【备注:此展览禁止12岁以下儿童观展,谢谢。】

#310 Sea of Japen, Oki 1987_35.3×46.3.jpg

法国哲学家和社会学家Maurice Halbwachs在1925年发明了mémoire collective这个词,我把它译为“共同的记忆”。在今天,粗粗一扫历史研究类的文章,总是能看到类似于“集体记忆”的词,虽然被广泛地应用,但对它的理解并不是没有争议的,它的解读也往往需要在众多不同理论框架中选择一个。可是仅仅只选择一个的话,在我们看着这些展出作品的时候,会显得有些单薄。既然如此,不如就让我们保持一些对“共同的记忆”的朦胧感,如同诗人对待文字一般。

#338, Irish Sea, Isle of Man_35.3×46.3_1990.JPG

共同的记忆就肯定不是一个人的特权,而是一个群体共有的。随着时间的推移、空间的转变、文化语境的变化,这份记忆也会从一个模样变为另一个模样。只是根据记忆的不同,有些变化慢到让人觉得达到了永恒,有些变化却快过了一眨眼。在这根变化的轴上,杉本博司想要找到一些存在,能够从某种程度上超越时空和文化语境。他在动物模型上找到了灵感,因为这些模型能够超越自然给予它们本体的时间;他还找到了海,单纯的海景不仅能够唤起我们的某些记忆,同时它的存在又让任何人类文明显得渺小。很多人都深陷杉本博司作品创造的魅影中,他的海景不仅仅从形态上类似于我们记忆中见到的某片海,更是有一种如梦中相见的似曾相识感,这种感受似乎是从远古时起就在我们的潜意识中一脉相承。从某种程度上来说,杉本博司作品中的永生可以让任何一个人微不足道,也可以让任何一个文明变成指尖溜走的一个瞬间。

California Condor_2012.jpg

杉本博司的相片超越了我们生活的当代,和他不一样,常易的名人系列明明确确地唤起了我们记忆中的当代媒体。他拍下了所有人都熟悉的脸庞。Halbwachs说过,记忆依靠的是人与人之间的作用力,一个人和他/她群体成员中的接触决定了这个人记忆的内容。换句话说,记忆的内容变得不重要了,决定内容的是记忆形成的过程。常易拍下的名人,有她们荧幕中的角色,有我们在无数广告中看到的图像,还有我们和朋友交流中的给出的评价。常易的作品也可以被看做是一场审问,一场对我们所理解的记忆的审问。我们的记忆揭露的是真实吗?或者说探讨真实与否有任何的意义吗?我们的记忆到底是一个概念还是一个经历?或者说这两者之间本来就没有界限?

Christian常易.jpg

如果常易的名人系列掀起的是一场头脑风暴,那张巍的作品可能更接近于这场头脑风暴的一个回答。相比较于一个摄影师,张巍更像是一个画家或者一个指挥员,他的《人工剧院》系列是用真实拼凑的制造品。你看到的奥黛丽赫本压根没有一丁点奥黛丽赫本的真实容貌,而是用了不同人脸的不同部分组合修饰而成。乍一看张巍《人工剧院》里的肖像,每个人都会毫不犹豫的喊出一个耳熟能详的名字,比如迈克尔杰克逊,比如安吉丽娜朱莉。有些观者仔细一看可能会发现里面的端倪,这明明不是他/她的鼻子也不是他/她的嘴唇,可是也有更多的观者可能压根就看不出这其中蹊跷,因为和这些面貌仅仅只有荧幕上的几面之缘而已。张巍挑逗的那部分记忆站立的是“熟悉”两字的对立面,与它相对的是我们珍爱的记忆、亲密的记忆。我们脑海中的家人或朋友带着情带着爱,他们的面孔在我们的记忆中是镌刻下来的形象,是鼻子有多高,是笑起来嘴角什么弧度,是眼神带着什么情感。而媒体塑造出来的形象只是不同元素的拼凑来的制造品,不同的筛选加上不同的排列组合,最终可以变成任何一个面貌,包括名人。

反重力结构 Antigravity Structure2008 _ 70 × 70 cm.png

欣赏摄影家的作品可以是一场独自的活动,与他人无关,但是解读这些画面常常需要一些大家共有的视觉代码。在一幅能够系起众人的作品中,我们总是能找到一些熟悉感,作品呈现的可能是一个宇宙中从古至今的存在,也可能是一个被大量生产传播的画面。虽然都是大家共有的记忆,但前者“永恒”到超越了生和死,而后者却瞬息万变到压根寻不着它的踪迹。与此同时,欣赏作品本身又是一次构建新记忆的过程。杉本博司极简的海景画面给真实存在的海加上了一层宁静与永恒,常易或者张巍的“名人”作品,在大众塑造的形象中填上了物化与变异的色调。虽然三位艺术家用了不同的方式,但他们都创造了可触碰的作品,真真切切地存在我们面前。但是,真正打动我们的并不是物质世界存在的真实。康德曾说过,美这个词是给一种努力的,这种努力架起了物质世界和精神世界的桥梁。这些作品中真正的美丽之处就是他们创造了连接物质与精神的网,把我们所看之物接到了一个无形世界之中。

石炭纪海底,2.9-3.55 亿年Carboniferous Sea Bottom, 290-355 million years old_2008 _ 70 × 70 cm.png

概要

摄影作品一定是物质世界的真实写照吗?社交网络里朋友发的生活照大部分时候离事实还不太远,报纸上的新闻照尽管片面大部分时候也是真实的,但是在杉本博司、常易和张巍三位艺术家眼中,摄影通向的是一个无形世界,是一个记忆的维度。就像杉本博司的海,人们看到的不是海,而是梦境中的一个画面,记录下了从远古时期就传承下来的人们对海的记忆。就像常易拍摄的名人系列,观者看到的从来不是明星本人,而是大众记忆中她们的一幅幅荧幕画面。就像张巍的《人工剧院》系列,用全世界都熟知的面孔却揭示了大众记忆构成的本质——不过是媒体拼凑来的制造品。此次杜若云章画廊的摄影第二季“共同的记忆”集结了杉本博司、常易和张巍三位摄影艺术家,他们的作品通向了我们记忆中的哪个角落呢?是对宇宙的认知,是对一部电视剧的回忆,还是一份探讨意识本身的思考?

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The French philosopher and sociologist Maurice Halbwachs coined the term mémoire collective (collective memory) in his book Les Cadres sociaux de la mémoire in 1925. Today, it is almost impossible to read a text in history that does not mention the term. Despite its popularity, it is not a term of undisputable meanings. Its interpretation often requires a selection out of several different theoretical frameworks and none is sufficient alone to explain the visual experience we would have with the exhibited photographs. Nevertheless, we can take a much broader definition of the term and can approach the artworks, in the manner a poet approaches words.

历史的历史 History of History_2008 _ 70 × 70 cm.png

Collective Memory generally signifies a memory shared by a group. It is not exclusive to a single person and its (re)construction shifts with time, places and cultures, but depending on the memory, its sensitivity varies. Within the spectrum, Hiroshi Sugimoto wants to find images of existences which are – to a certain degree – unbounded by time, space, and cultures. He′s found his inspirations from animal mounts – a way to outlive the life assigned by Nature; he′s found the sea – an existence that both arouses some memories from us and at the same time whose scope is beyond any human existence. Many people are caught by the somewhat haunting images of Sugimoto. His seascapes, on one hand, have the iconic representations of some real memories we have of the sea but, on the other hand, strike many with a déjà vu kind of dreaminess as if this subconscious feeling is passed onto us from the First People. In a way, the immortality associated with Sugimoto′s images dwarfs any memory of a legendary hero or any history of a great civilisation. 

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Whereas Sugimoto’s photos transcend a sense of contemporaneity, Christian Chambenoit’s works of the famous are engaged with our memory of the contemporary media. He has photographed people known to everyone. Halbwachs argues that memories rely on ‘the dynamics of groups’ and ‘an individual’s social interactions with the members of his or her group determine…what it is that he or she remembers’ (Russel 796). In other words, the content of the memory does not matter; it is the process of formation that determines the content. What we remember of Chambenoit’s celebrities are the characters they’ve played on TV, the countless images we saw of them in advertisements and the various chats we had with our friends about them. Chambenoit’s photographs can also be viewed as an interrogation of our understanding of memories. Do they necessarily reveal the truth? Is there any point tracing the truth? Do they always tell something tangible? If not, how do we differentiate the conceptual from the concrete? 

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While Chambenoit’s series of celebrities engage viewers in a storm of questions, Zhang Wei’s works can be seen as arguments leading to a definitive answer. Rather than a photographer, he is a more like a painter or a conductor. His Artificial Theatres series is composed of multiple collages fabricated from real existences. The deceiving image of Audrey Hepburn, for example, takes no real feature from her, but instead is made of jigsaw pieces of different faces. A glance of Zhang Wei′s portraits will lead anyone to world-famous names like Michael Jackson or Angelina Jolie and yet a second glance might reveal numerous abnormalities (i.e. the nose or the eye seems wrong). Interestingly, despite the stark mismatch, many viewers wouldn′t even cast a doubt because these highly recognizable face are in fact so volatile in their memories. By contrast, we remember the people we love differently. We remember the shape of their noses, the angle of their lips when they smile, and the light in their eyes that speak to us. What the media have fabricated is not an organic piece but instead, could be easily amended and scraped off; fame could land on anyone really and anyone could be famous. 

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The viewing of an artist’s photograph can be a personal experience but its decoding often relies on visual codes shared by many. When we look at a photograph of universal recognition, we can often attribute something familiar to it; it could be an existence that has transcended time and space, or a face that is being mass-produced by the media. In spite of their ‘universality’, the former has reached an ‘immortality’ that is undefined by earthly life and death while the latter is too volatile to trace.  In the meanwhile, this viewing is also a part of an ongoing construction of new memories. Sugimoto’s minimalist Seascapes could add another dimension of serenity and eternity to the material existence of the sea. In the case of Chambenoit or Zhang Wei, their works of ‘the fame’ could further gloss the public faces over with imaginative modifications. One way or another, the three artists have created tangible works mirroring material existences but it is not their representations of what exist that have moved us. For Immanuel Kant, ‘the aesthetic is the name of the attempt to bridge the gap between the material and the spiritual world’ (Culler 33). What is really beautiful of these works lies in the web they’ve created connecting the material with the spiritual, and bridging what we see to the realm of the subconscious. 

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Summary

Does photographic work necessarily represent the material world? The photos of our friends in social media are mostly not very far from reality; the images we see on the news at least reveal some partial truth. To Hiroshi Sugimoto, Christian Chambenoit, and Zhang Wei, however, photography is the means to reach the subconscious where our collective memories lie. Just like in Sugimoto’s Seascapes, their déjà vu kind of familiarity can be traced back to the first memory the First People had of the sea. Just like in Chambenoit′s photos of fame, just like in Zhang Wei’s Artifical Theatres, he has fabricated universally recognised faces to reveal their volatile nature. The exhibition La Mémoire Collective at the Je Fine Art Gallery showcases the works by Sugimoto, Chambenoit and Zhang Wei side by side, as an attempt to investigate the implications behind these collective memories. What is our knowledge of the universe? What do we recollect from a tv series? Can we reflect on the nature of memories? 

张巍Zhang Wei.jpg

Bibliography

Russell, Nicolas. “Collective Memory before and after Halbwachs.” The French Review, vol. 79, no. 4, 2006, pp. 792-804. JSTOR.

Culler, Jonathan. “What is Literature and Does it Matter?” Literary Theory: A Very Short Introduction, New Edition, Oxford University Press, 2000, pp. 18-41.