FIAT#LUX — a Latin phrase meaning “let there be light” — is a collaborative project by photographer Lénaïc Mercier and painter Chantal Westby that doesn’t confine itself to photographs and paintings alone, but realizes through this site-specific installation an entirely immersive experience, at once utopian and intimate.
“FIAT#LUX”, developed by the two French artists exclusively for New York City, is a study in process, where the character-driven photography of Mercier reflects on the creative practice of Westby, intimately detailing the stages of development involved in Westby’s use of Chinese inks and natural mineral pigments to form figures, lines, and shapes. Incorporating not only pictorial methods, but scents and sounds as well, “FIAT#LUX” is a unique take on the compartmentally separated genres of painting and photography, bringing both to life in a way that would be impossible if not for the overlapping of several media.
The result is a thoroughly enveloping experience, where viewers use not only their eyes, but the full range of their senses to participate in the scenes Westby creates. As Mercier’s photographs capture the embodied labor that goes into creating Westby’s impassioned, often surreal brand of art, the documentarian lens of his camera is taken to its limit, focusing not simply on recording a moment, but on retracing the emergence of a process — one that has as much to do with an artist working in her studio as with the productive imagination from which her artwork stems.
As suggested by the title, “FIAT#LUX” makes the private public, bringing to light the invisible history that goes into making a work of art. The way the artists have chosen to make the underbelly of an artwork visible is by transposing both painting and photography onto the plane of another medium. The techniques underlying documentary photography, the manual labor that goes into the genesis of a painting, is translated into a digital sensorium: video mapping, a diffusion of lights, as well as music, are all used to expose the operations that tradition, along with aesthetic criticism, customarily conceals.
Exhibition Dates: September 26, 2017 – October 17, 2017
Reception: Thursday, September 28, 6:00pm – 8:00pm
Private preview: Tuesday, September 26, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm (please RSVP: email@example.com)
Gallery Hours: Tues-Sat 11-6
Gallery Location: 530 West 25th St, Chelsea, New York
About Agora Gallery
Agora Gallery is a contemporary fine art gallery located in the heart of Chelsea’s fine art district in New York. Established in 1984, Agora Gallery specializes in connecting art dealers and collectors with national and international artists. The art gallery’s expert consultants are available to assist corporate and private clients in procuring original artwork to meet their organization’s specific needs and budget requirements. With a strong online presence and popular online gallery, ARTmine, coupled with the spacious and elegant physical gallery space, the work of our talented artists, who work in diverse media and styles, can receive the attention it deserves. Over the years Agora Gallery has sponsored and catered to special events aimed at fostering social awareness and promoting the use of art to help those in need.