Magic Electronics

Laure Prouvost

Thursday, December 1, 2016

The smell of a squashed tomato on the floor can bring about a whole chain of memories. Even if you don’t smell the tomato in my film, you see the smell, your memory will trigger it. I like it when people say, ‘oh, your films stink.’ I like bringing in another sensation with only pixels…
—Laure Prouvost, "How to Keep up with the Past," interview with Laura Herman in Metropolis, April 21, 2014.

Magic Electronics is a 2014 work by French artist Laure Prouvost, in which she installed moving lights and synched audio into a gallery in order to animate and narrate her exhibition of objects. In doing so, she transformed the static exhibition into a stage. Magic Electronics is exemplary of an approach that slips between formats (video, sculpture, installation) and registers (speech, image, object, light), deliberately mistranslating and misunderstanding as it goes.

Magic Electronics will figure as the center of an evening-long conversation between Prouvost and EMPAC curator Victoria Brooks during which the pair will screen and discuss a selection of Prouvost’s work, taking the audience on a journey from the pre-recorded and situated to the live and one-off. Prouvost is in residence at EMPAC to develop a new performance, which will be premiered alongside her solo exhibition at Walker Art Center in 2017–18. 

Laure Prouvost (based in Antwerp, Belgium) is known for her films and installations, characterized by richly layered stories, translation, and surreal moments. Engaged in an ongoing conversation with the history of art and literature, Prouvost often makes use of humor and the fantastical to explore the boundaries between fiction and reality to unhinge commonplace and expected connections between language, image, and perception. In 2013 she was the recipient of the Turner Prize, the United Kingdom's most publicized award in contemporary art.

Victoria Brooks
Magic Electronics
December 1, 2016, 7PM

EMPAC 2016–17 presentations, residencies, and commissions are supported by Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts.