Anne-Lise Coste

5 days 5 years

NoguerasBlanchard, Barcelona
Apr 15 - May 22, 2010

5 days 5 years intimately reveals for the first time a specific period from the artist’s past, the poignant memory of a traumatic personal experience.

NoguerasBlanchard is proud to present the third gallery exhibition of Anne-Lise Coste (Marseille, 1973). Following her exhibitions FRANCE, an angry denouncement of her native country’s social policy and Save Picasso, a critique towards the commercialization of art through its professionalization, 5 days 5 years intimately reveals for the first time a specific period from the artist’s past, the poignant memory of a traumatic personal experience.

In what could be regarded as a therapeutic exercise, Coste offers a glimpse into her inner world. Through the use of drawings and sculpture, in a reiterative almost obsessive manner, a domestic setting is represented over and over again: a bedroom. Formally austere, with angular lines and through an exploration of geometric proportions, Coste shows us the oppressive and distressful space that holds a place in her memory (“hospital as home, home as institution, institution as home, the bedroom staying devilishly the same“). Some of the drawings also show the scrawled outline of a figure, probably the artist, a dramatic protagonist of this personal nightmare. The sculptures reconstruct the simple bedroom in a miniature scale: a chair, a bed and a cross cast in iron placed delicately on the floor, as Coste turns from the everyday Povera materials employed in her sculptural works to date. Recalling Joseph Beuys’ installation “Space of pain”, the medium here is incorporated as another element of expression.

Anne-Lise Coste is known for her radical approach, in which the creative potential of her art is articulated in the spontaneous gesture and what is directly said, written and painted. In her works, Coste opposes the standardization of art and uncompromisingly points out the fleeting nature of the moment. The artist uses the script as a visual code, as well as a contextual medium, in order to raise philosophical-existential questions in a playful, lighthearted way, to send emotional messages into the world and to vent her rebellion against the existing political conditions. She deliberately refuses to adopt linguistic or artistic conventions in her use of words and images, adopting the spontaneity of graffitti and infusing it with her personal, romantic and poetic sensibility. In 5 days 5 years, language is, paradoxically, inexistent, as if revealing the insufficiency of language to express that which is most profound and personal. The freedom of the sprayed airbursh, which usually allows Coste to express her emotional states, seems to have given way here to a study of geometric shapes and compositions, a formal structure for her deepest anxieties and neuroses.

Anne-Lise Coste’s recent exhibitons include: Voici un dessin Suisse. 1990-2010, Musée Jenisch Vevey, Vevey, Switzerland (2010); Beginnings, Middles, And Ends, Curated by_Vienna09, Viena, curated by Gianni Jetzer (2009); Violência Institucional e Poetica, Fundación Serralves, Oporto (2008); Words Fail Me, MoCAD Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, USA; Destroy Athens, I Bienal de Atenas (2007); Learn to Read, Tate Modern, London (2007); COSMIC Dreams, Centro Cultural Andratx, Mallorca (2007). Upcoming projects include an artist-in-residency at Artpace, San Antonio, Texas in 2011.

Anne-Lise Coste currently lives and works in New York.

Read more