Carte Blanche à David Douard with Nicolas Ceccaldi
, Valerie Keane
 and Antoine Trapp

inner GLOw’ replica

June 04, 2024 — September 30, 2024

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With inner GLOw’ replica, David Douard is the first international artist to be given carte blanche by Basement Roma. Inspired by the format conceived and produced for years by the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, the Basement Roma exhibition program now draws on one of the central figures of a new digital grammar which is translated by the artist into a complex combination of materials, forms, and expressive means. Here, waste elements, fragments, objects, debris mix with sounds, texts and images taken from the Internet, creating hybrid, disconnected environments, infected with new narrative germs, which replace the real world and profoundly transform it. Douard’s works burst into the exhibition itinerary by altering the spatial coordinates through temporary walls, passages, obstacles and shortcuts and the reactivation of multiple recovered and assembled elements, thus physically and mentally intertwining with the work of the other artists involved. Thus starting from the most authentic roots of his work, Douard is called to be the leading figure of a mash-up with other artists who, due to affinity, language, or medium, fit into his artistic production vision. Starting from the gif novel Zac’s Haunted House by the American author Dennis Cooper – a new graphic novel in which a sequence of images taken from the Internet and divided into chapters replaces traditional literary grammar – the artist highlights the translation of a new relationship between language and the Internet. The exhibition converges on the idea of a constant ambivalence of the role of the spectator, an active observer but also an unconscious accomplice of a new connectivity that calls into play the physical, objective and sculptural dimension of the work and the blurred contours of a new digital permeability. The space, only apparently neutral to new technologies, is thus reread as an unprecedented repertoire of poetic fragments, capable of taking on unexpected forms in the context of the détournement carried out by the artist, in which each element translates into another, in a gaze never univocal but plural. If Antoine Trapp translates his research through a notebook of images created through AI and transferred to the analogue support of an old folder, Nicolas Ceccaldi’s work Untitled (Winnie the Pooh) borrowed from Douard’s personal collection, speaks of a special, intimate and domestic bond with the work, where a security camera hidden behind the apparently harmless eyes of a Winnie the Pooh plush brings the artist’s daily experience into a public, choral and collective sphere: the visitors, filmed by the device and broadcast on a screen become – as a passive accomplice – part of the environment set up by the artist. Thus Valerie Keane’s works, with their assemblages of mechanical materials processed into abstract and elusive suspended sculptures, betray an obvious tension between movement and control, between fragility and strength, between rudimentality of materials and elusiveness of form. A tension called to resolve itself in the composite balance of her (non-human) figures and the constant drive between presence and absence, between form and space, between solemn and material.

Hence, a mix of references, quotes and allusions translates the labyrinthine installation of the exhibition into a space of its own. The works become part of a single landscape, a driving force of expressive means, languages, and phonemes, which are articulated into a single whole, egalitarian and multiform at the same time.

Supported by
Fondazione Nuovi Mecenati

In partneship with
Villa Médicis. Académie de France à Rome

(+) On this occasion, Lenard Giller’s engraved aluminum door plate “There is more within me” inaugurates the program of La Rampa’s outdoor projects.