Julien Bismuth “Sibyl Sybil” at La Criée centre for contemporary art, Rennes
I keep erasing what I’ve recorded and starting over, not even listening to it, just erasing it and starting over.
I can’t find a way to describe the show or the works. Something sticks when I try to bring them into language in that way, from that direction. I’d rather tell you about something else, the title, for example. The Sibyl is a figure from Greek mythology. The Sibyil is an oracle. Her home has “a hundred openings, a hundred mouths.” She writes her predictions on oak tree leaves, dispersed to the winds. When I looked up the spelling of her name, I found that there were two, and that the other referred to a book and a film from the 70s that you may have seen.
I wanted to hang the show on a name like you would a coat on a coathhook. I wanted the name to be that of a figure and the figure that came to mind was the Sibyl, of which there is not one but many.
I could describe the works. I could tell you that there will be a video, images, objects, but also marks or traces on the walls or the floors or the doors even. And that I’ll also be showing collections, collections of things that I come across, that I end up with, and that end up in my studio and come to play a role in my thinking.
But I’d rather talk a bit more about the Sibyl. I like the idea of a text that’s received. I like the idea of a text that’s communicated in dispersed fragments. There is a passivity to what we call the creative process. A receptivity that allows one to receive or encounter whatever it is that an idea is. A blind thing, fumbling for its form.
Julien Bismuth, May 2017
Curated by Sophie Kaplan.
at La Criée, Rennes
until 20 August 2017