Into the woods, Granville gallery, Paris
Into the woods was imagined after a meeting between the designer matali crasset, the film director Benjamin Crotty and the ceramic artist Ehren Tool within a specific framework of the Vent des Forêts, a rural art centre in the Meuse managed by Pascal Yonet.
Within this bucolic area heavily marked by the First World War, these three artists conversed: matali crasset refers to it as a return to nature, reminiscent of ideas of Henry David Thoreau, Benjamin Crotty evokes the army’s domestic side and the fragmenting of sexual stereotypes, whereas Ehren Tool who fought during the Persian Gulf War, attests to his desire to create conversations about war through ceramic art.
The landscapes which matali crasset was familiar with as a child were those of Champagne Pouilleuse and in the Marne which were severely damaged by the First World War and then by deforestation with an agricultural development backed by the use of fertilisers and pesticides, the latter being products of the chemical arms used during the Great War ...
Since 2009, matali crasset has been involved in the Vent des Forêts adventure. For this atypical rural art centre where the forest itself is the museum, she designed some cabins in wood. They are the three cabin-homes: the Nichoir, the Noisette and the Chrysaldie, which were created within the framework of a public sector commission.
With this new project, the designer is presenting a series of objects in wood, small furniture, quilts and …. It’s a set of items in sycamore maple, plates and bowls, made alongside the wood-turner Philippe Huet, spoon with wood sculptor Jean Bergeron, a quilt with Carmelite sisters, a cloak with a weaver Colette Chatelet…
The Vent de Forêts also welcomed a film shoot by the American film director Benjamin Crotty who placed these architectural wonders of matali crasset into a fictitious world.
His film Fort Buchanan, shot in seasonal blocks, is a tragicomedy which takes place within a military setting and uses many
of matali crasset’s already-built architectural structures.
Her cabin-homes were used for the accommodations of the soldiers’ wives and husbands, whereas her Dar Hi Hotel in Tunisia was transformed into a Djiboutian military camp ...
The transpositions and transformations in the film are more than just architectural; they are also aesthetic, geographical, linguistic and sexual. Lastly, the film combines the linguistic conformity
of television series and the visual poetry associated with auteur films.
Benjamin Crotty will present a new work based on the rushes made during the Spring shoot for the film.
Ehren Tool is a former United Sates Marine who fought in the Gulf War and whose life is presently focused on ceramics. Since 2001, he’s been creating cups - and only cups.
He uses this commonplace object, strongly anchored in American culture, to ascertain his discipline. He has people become players of his art, requesting them to send photos
of their family members, thus making his cups objects of dissemination and memory to speak about the unspeakable. Ehren Tool has produced, sold and given away around sixteen thousand cups since 2001.
Ehren Tool is invited this summer to be in residence at the Vent des Forêts. He will present objects created during this workshop and others made in association with matali crasset and other guests.
This exhibition was organized with the complicity of the Vent des Forêts.
- Aurelien Mole, Loup Godé