SNAKE / MIRRORS / VIVARIUM EXHIBITION / GALERIE KREO / 2019
-

What is the missing link between the animal kingdom and the object? In his new exhibition «Vivarium», Jean-Baptiste Fastrez offers a very personal response to this issue: eight works, comprising furniture and objects, presented like animals in a jar, within our London gallery. In this bestiary, the designer has invited only wild – sometimes dangerous – animals which he has tamed and placed as if they were in a vivarium.
In his subtle work of representation, which he approaches with a distanced gaze, we recognise each animal by a clue, as so many enigmas to resolve in order to affirm a familiar but never blaring presence. The mirror sinuous curve resembles a snake, the green marble from the Alps evokes crocodile skin and the console palissandre bleuet marble recalls pachyderm hide. Fastrez, as always, mixes natural and synthetic materials. Corian is combined with natural stone, the anodised aluminium pendants and the polycarbonate lampshade of the "Jellyfish" lamp seem to have just risen from the waters. This synergy between form, technique and narration guides his work. The objects always recount a tale and animals constitute an inexhaustible source of inspiration, because they are loaded with symbolic power, referring to human beings’ attachment to life.
«Vivarium» is rooted in the 1930s and especially into Jean Dunand’s work, providing a more abstract and contemporary version. A rediscovered balance between rationality and free forms, abstraction and narration in which Fastrez navigates with humour and subtlety, indeed with a certain welcoming irony.
-
Text by Marie Godfrain
Pictures by Fabrice Gousset
-