From March 28th to June 22nd 2008


Working from within,
Claude Closky arranges,
classifies, inventories, orders,
disorders and disorganises the
representational and organisational
systems of the world, pushing their logic
to their point of collapse.
A decoder of slogans, signs and messages,
he utilises the modes of structuring
reality (mathematical, alphabetical
and temporal, among others).
Superimposing them, he produces
a vacuum within mechanised
organisation, within interpretational
and analytical frameworks. The veracity
and efficacy of terms are thrown into
disarray (What happens when
the first ten numbers are classified in
alphabetical order? When the same
operation is carried out in a foreign

These disruptions
of information systems centre on
the question of enunciation and usage.
Closky works in a post-structuralist
tradition and language is his preferred
instrument. He is an heir to Oulipo,
Magritte and Conceptual Art; his raw
material is the economics of the sign
(designation, signified and signifier).
The underlying aim of this first
retrospective is to highlight, above and
beyond the formal diversity of Claude
Closky’s works, the main leitmotifs,
to throw into relief the thematic links
and recurring processes of this teeming
and polymorphic universe, which
embraces painting, the Internet, collage,
drawing, photographs, slide shows,
videos and various publications.
‘8002-9891’ proposes a rereading
of the artist’s works, retracing twenty
years of endeavour.

The raw materials of the project are
sound works and texts. Using as
a starting point the essential capacity
of a text to exist both in written and
spoken form, ‘8002-9891’ proposes
a rereading of the artist’s works, which
are interpreted in the manner of musical
scores. In the process, it calls into
question the very definition of the work,
producing a displacement that is highly
paradoxical. Spoken and heard,
the text changes, becoming the texture
of the voices of others. Yet in spite
of its dematerialisation, it remains
the same object.
The audio equipment required for such
a project must be carefully tailored to
purpose. In this respect, we have made
some radical choices. The exhibition
space is empty and is bathed in semidarkness. The playing of each work
in the headsets is guided by a system
of infrared equipment positioned
overhead. Alone in the midst of others,
the visitor is confronted with texts
and voices.

A few sound events emitted
at various points throughout the space
punctuate the day. The works are
grouped together without any respect
for chronological logic, following
on from each other and responding
to each other spatially. Sound replaces
the visible. The visitor, who has become
listener, his body and his movements
are simultaneously placed at the centre
of the installation and yet are governed
by a form of authority. Everyone
is confronted with the awareness
of being a visitor. Everyone must create
their own place and their own approach
to the exhibition and the work.

Frank Lamy