“Use delay instead of picture or painting.”
– Marcel Duchamp
Delay is what is or what happens too late. The state of being delayed relates to time and applies for instance to the movement of a watch, which can be either be slowed down or driven forward. In the words of Duchamp above, ‘delay’ indicates further the suspension of aesthetic pleasure in order to replace and do away with the very idea of picture. With this phrase, manifested in Duchamp’s invention of the readymade – ordinary objects taken out of their original context to be declared works of art by the artist – the artwork is no longer a mere visual reproduction or painting, but brings about potential distortion between the work and reality.
In TOO LATE Thierry Geoffroy unfolds the concept of ‘delay’ in probing the position of the artist today, entrusting the artist the sensibility and ability to predict and prevent accidents by being in advance of coming dysfunctions and emergencies in society. In continuation of Duchamp’s introduction of delay substituting picture, Geoffroy examines the passage or interstice between the world and art – an intermediate stage, where an artwork can come into being in advance, in time, or too late.
Through his underground strategy of creating and exhibiting artworks in real-time, Geoffroy reflects upon the artist’s impact and capability today in expressing about urgent matters such as the consequences of climate change and ongoing global wars. All matters, which seem too late to solve and at the same time too late to postpone solving. The idea is for the artist is to be ahead of time, informing society about the concerns he/she encounters without hesitation or deferment.
According to Geoffroy, the contemporary state of the world can be characterised by the ‘too late’ as it always already lies behind us. The exhibition raises awareness of whether the stage of delay is desirable and even an inevitable condition for artists producing artworks today – whether ‘the too late’ is a constant or marks the final call to take action.
IS THE PRESENT STATE OF ‘TOO LATE’ OUR FINAL CALL TO TAKE ACTION?
SABSAY is thrilled to announce the opening of ‘TOO LATE’, a solo exhibition by Thierry Geoffroy, unfolding the idea of ‘delay’ in probing the position of the artist in today’s society. Through his underground strategies of creating and exhibiting artworks in real-time, Geoffroy reflects upon artists’ impact and capability of expressing about urgent social and political matters.
Geoffroy’s second exhibition at SABSAY marks a new chapter in the artist’s practice, in which his reflection on pressing changes that society faces today has become even more alarming than ever. While matters as climate change and global on- going wars seem to have reached their point of no return, Geoffroy has reached a turning point in his practice: “At this point I am perhaps more pessimistic. Maybe gesticulating and calling for action is unuseful, maybe it is too late, or maybe the too late is the final call, a last chance, a last tentative for alarm. Maybe the TOO LATE is a new strategy to raise awareness about the imminent alerts,” the artist states.
Like in Geoffroy’s first exhibition at SABSAY “Always Question the Structure” in 2017, the idea is for the artists in TOO LATE to be ahead of time, informing society about the concerns they encounter without hesitation or deferment. “We are honoured to present the second exhibition with Thierry Geoffroy at SABSAY. In “Always Question the Structure” in the spring of 2017, Geoffroy took us on an introductory tour, demonstrating his talent of prediction and precision of insight in his artistic comment to Documenta. This time the artist presents us with the final warning to take him seriously”, says Masha Faurschou, founder of SABSAY.
Entrusting the artist the sensibility and role of predicting and preventing accidents, Geoffroy reflects upon the artist’s ability of being in advance of coming emergencies in society in the exhibition. “TOO LATE is more than a final warning; it is a trigger button, the alarm for one to awake from the unconscious and unquestioned ways in life. Why not make today the time to reassess, rethink, revaluate the everyday choices we make out of habit or convenience. Thierry Geoffroy is the master of the “emergency art” and we hope to be ultimately instrumental at channelling his unique talent to the global audience”, says Masha Faurschou.
Many might remember Geoffroy’s tireless attempt to involve artists, NGOs and the public in the common project Artistes de Garde HQ during the climate conference COP 15 through his performative interventions, meetings and exhibitions. The last 10 years, the artist has been energetically activating his art formats Emergency Room and Critical Run at museums and art events around the world, including MoMA PS1, ZKM Museum of Contemporary Art, Kunsthalle Mannheim, HEART Museum, Venice Biennale, Liverpool Biennale, Manifesta, and Casablanca Biennale among others.
About Thierry Geoffroy
Thierry Geoffroy (b. 1961) – also known under his artist alias ‘Colonel’ – is a French artist, living in Copenhagen, Denmark. He is a format artist, developing art formats, working with a wide variety of media including video and installations. His most known art formats include Emergency Room, Biennalist and Critical Run. Geoffroy has published ten books and his artworks have been included in several international museum collections. Since his last solo exhibition at Sabsay “Always Question the Structure” in 2017, he has been exhibiting at several international art institutions and biennales including the ones listed above. Upcoming exhibitions include: ‘Empathy’, Vejle Kunstmuseum, Denmark, June 2018; ‘The Anatomy of Prejudice’, IKM Museum, Oslo, Norway, until 2022; ‘Format Festival’, Derby, UK, March 2019; Artsvit Gallery, Dnipro, Ukraine, September 2019; Akershus Art Center, Lillestrøm, Norway, August 2019.
Opening at SABSAY 25 April, 5-7 pm