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Double Bind

Stop trying to understand me !

Artists : Boris Achour | Bas Jan Ader | Jérôme Allavena | Renaud Auguste-Dormeuil | Gilles Barbier | Robert Barry | Erick Beltrán | Stéphane Bérard | Dominique Blais | Mel Bochner | Julien Bouillon | Pascal Broccolichi | Marcel Broodthaers | Marc Chevalier | Ma Chong | Gérard Collin-Thiébaut | Anthony Duchêne | Jean Dupuy | Éric Duyckaerts | Omer Fast | Robert Filliou | Francesco Finizio | Henry Flynt | Ryan Gander | Jean-Baptiste Ganne | Dora Garcia | Mark Geffriaud | Alexandre Gérard | Claire Glorieux | Dan Graham | Joseph Grigely | Raymond Hains | Temo Javakhi | David Jourdan | Ben Kinmont | Nicholas Knight | Silvia Kolbowski | Jirí Kovanda | Christine Kozlov | Joris Lacoste | Thierry Lagalla | Louise Lawler | Alvin Lucier | Christian Marclay | Aurélien Mole | Robert Morris | Bruce Nauman | Dennis Oppenheim | Philippe Parreno | Gaël Peltier | Alexandre Périgot | Antoine Poncet | Will Potter | Noël Ravaud | Bettina Samson | Mathieu Schmitt | Yann Sérandour | Richard Serra | Pierre Thoretton | Lawrence Weiner | Cerith Wyn Evans | Raphaël Zarka Collectif(s) d’artistes : A Constructed World | Art & Language | Brion Gysin & Ian Sommerville | Cercle Ramo Nash | Christophe Berdaguer & Marie Péjus | François Curlet & Michel François

Curator : Eric Mangion.
Associate curators : Dean Inkster and Sébastien Pluot.

Three years after Transmission1, which questioned the work of art as an instrument for transmitting, we now mean to deal with the misunderstandings, alterations, hiatuses, confusions or misinterpretations which specifically derive from any attempt to transmit. The goal will be to point out these malfunctions, whether discreet or obvious, these failures
which reveal thought to be less linear than expected, and communication to be essentially a matter of interpretation.

The ability to recognise this discordance is the foundation of a conception of art as being based on what is different, subjective and open to interpretation. A conception which asserts the propensity to lead astray from the ideal of transparency and truth towards which translation might be tempted to strive. Carried by a deeply ingrained impulse to transmit the truth of a thought or of an experience, the fantasy of a transparent communication has bridged over time.
From the Babelic myth of a universal language to the theories of correspondences, and including the positivist ideology of the perfect translation that might be achieved thanks to computer sciences.

Hence the title of the show Double Bind/ Stop trying to understand me ! in reference to the notion of “double bind”
inherent to translation – both necessary and impossible -, and also in reference to psychoanalyst/philosopher Jacques
Lacan’s exclamation to one of his students, the latter seeming overanxious to understand the meaning of each and every

Thus each work featured in the show will illustrate in its own way a particular type of misunderstanding between man
and man, man and machine, or machine and machine. The exhibition will also try to reveal the nuances characterising
misunderstanding. Deliberate and carefully contrived misunderstandings, misunderstandings that stem from natural
language distortions, or from changing from one medium to another, or that stem from confrontations between objects
and minds, from manipulating meaning, or even from chance interpretations of dreams or fantasies. Mistakes can also
produce meaning, or at any rate, a work of art.

The exhibition will refer to generations of artists that all have in common their explorations of misunderstanding. It will
also be the opportunity for the art centre to collaborate with a group of teachers from the Ecole nationale supérieure
d’art of the Villa Arson, after which a series of films will be screened by l*Eclat, Pôle régional cinéma (Nice). Because a
translation is never definitive, the show will follow the principle of permanent change: various actions, performances,
dinner/conferences will be held during the exhibition. And two artists in residence, Erik Beltran and Yann Sérandour, will
organise workshops within the heart of the exhibition.