A.B. Meadows

"Campement": An Installation by Delphine Coindet

When she created her installation entitled "Campement" [Camp, or Camping] for the SPPELHOVEN 01 exhibition, Delphine Coindet placed four 'tent-like' structures on a meadow framed by trees and brushwork as well as a fence.

The 'tents' were simplified in that each one consisted of two rectangular metal places of exactly the same size (160 x 210 cm) touching each other at the top and creating an opening forming a regular triangle at both ends. Eight photos, apparently measuring 160 x 210 cm as well, were glued onto these metal plates. 

The photos showed 'exerpt'-like 'vistas' of nature. In this way, 'quoted', media-transported, fictionalized nature entered real nature.

Looking at the installation, we thus see on the screen that exists in our eyes / our brain, images of nature that hold or include, inside them, again images of nature. An irritation is produced that makes us more aware of the fact that seeing 'real' nature already presupposes a rapport, a relationship, between her or him who sees, and whatever is seen. And it is this rapport that is 'doubled' or complicated, by the intervention of the artist. 

It could be argued that a billboard, placed next to an American Inter-State highway, would do the same to us. Usually, however, the ordinary billboard is not noted as an aesthetic object (as such a purpose is known to be absent) and the landscape surrounding it is seen as accidental and of no relevance with regard to the billboard. We abstract from many of the billboard's sensual qualities in order to (consciouly, or more often, preconsciously) concentrate on its function, its 'message.' We disregard the surrounding landscape when we note the 'message' because the landscape is 'known' as something not functionally related to that message. 

In Delphine Coindet's installation, the fact that nature relates to nature, that the images placed inside 'real' nature show visual quotations of photographic landscape fragments, results in a montage. The inserted photos are recognized as aesthetic objects but the landscape they are placed in receives a new, heightened attention, as well. In fact, it becomes part of the aesthetic object, part of the installation. It is read as something 'aesthetic', too.

Somewhere, in an art magazine, I have recently seen a photo of an American landscape that included a billboard. On the billboard, I saw nothing but a landscape. Both the 'real' landscape represented in the photo and the photographed landscape inserted by way of the billboard in the art magazine photo showed characteristics typical of much of the Far West, with its vast empty stretches, its solitude. If the billboard image inside the photo was not the result of a computer-aided manipulation, it meant that an actual disfunctional, non-advertising billboard had been erected next to a Western highway and photographed by the artist. In that case, an installation similar to that of Delphine Coindet's had been created. 

Tentoonstelling / exposition
(starting Sept. 1, 2001)

[Participating artists:]
Michel Blazy / Delphine Coindet / Cel Crabeels / Alec de Busschère / Alain Géronnez / Mara Goldberg / Hans op de Beeck / Hugues Reip

De Organisatoren Isabelle Lemaître en Baudouin Oosterlynck
 samen met
Luc Coeckelberghs, Vincent Halflants, Odo Halflants, Leen Lybeer en Jos Uytterhoeven
heten u welcom.
v.z.v. Speelhoven. Haferbeekstraat 90
B-3200 Aarschot, Tel.-Fax 016 / 56 80 03