David Lamelas (born in Buenos Aires in 1946, lives and works in Los Angeles) is a key figure of the conceptual art scene. His work <i>Interview with Marguerite Duras</i> (1970) will be presented at California State University from September 17 to December 10, 2017, on loan from the Pinault Collection.


<div class="col m-10 pull-right align-right"> <span class="lieu">California State University /</span><br> <span class="lieu">Long Beach</span> </div> <br> <br> <br> <br> <div class="col m-10"> <span class="title">David</span><br><br> <span class="title">Lamelas</span> </div> <div class="col m-4 auteur pull-right"> <div class="inner"> <div class="white"> <a class="switch">Text</a><br> <b>Jonathan Pouthier</b><br> <span style="display: none;"> In charge of <br>programming of the <br>film department at <br>the MNAM - Centre <br>Pompidou </span> </div> </div> </div> <div class="clear"><br><br><br></div> <span class="alinea"></span>Through a diverse body of work that includes sculptures, installations, films, photography, and artist books, David Lamelas examines the evolution of art in the era of its dematerialization, as it becomes part of an economy governed by flows of information. Especially prolific in the field of experimental cinematography beginning in the early 1970s, the Argentinian artist subverts the role and syntax of cinema to deconstruct the mechanisms of representation and question the stakes of the viewer’s interpretations of an artist’s work. <br><br> <span class="alinea"></span>Seated near a window overlooking the garden of her house in Neauphle-le-Château, Marguerite Duras, her face emerging from the darkness, addresses an interviewer, who remains outside the frame. Lit cigarette in hand, she answers the questions of Argentinian writer Raúl Escari, ignoring the clicks of the camera that regularly punctuate the conversation, during which she describes her writing process and the practice of transposing text into image. <br><br> <span class="alinea"></span>A project commissioned by Galerie Yvon Lambert in 1970, Interview with Marguerite Duras consists of the edited segments of this conversation, captured by David Lamelas in 16-mm black-and-white film. Organized chronologically, the work provides several views of the same “event.” It is accompanied by a series of ten still photographs from the same sitting, each presented alongside by a manuscript transcript of the interview. <br><br> <span class="alinea"></span>This original configuration allows the artist to analyze and methodically deconstruct the format of the filmed interview. Adopting a deliberately regressive approach, Lamelas subverts one of the basic principles of cinema, replacing the film with its script, the image with its text, in order to convey a more accurate representation of the work of Marguerite Duras. Here, the artist’s attitude toward different media and recording methods is purely analytical and self-reflexive. “I wasn’t interested in Duras’s persona. This isn’t a portrait of Duras herself; I was interested in her approach to writing,” disclosed Lamelas about their encounter.<sup>1</sup> The content of the interview itself is not the subject of the work, but is rather a pretext to produce materials through which to study two seemingly opposed modes of perception: the continuity of film, contrasted with the discontinuity of photography and writing. <br><br> <span class="alinea"></span>Through the presentation of the documentation surrounding his interview with Duras in the white cube of the gallery, Lamelas proposes an original analysis of reality, adopting a strategy of remediation. Within the context of our present-day saturation of information, rather than simply embracing the logic of the film recording, the artist’s protocol proposes an active translation that evokes the machine capable of reproducing reality, described in The Invention of Morel, a story by Adolfo Bioy Casares, a favorite author of Lamelas’s, written several decades prior: “And someday there will be a more complete machine. One’s thoughts and feelings during life—or while the machine is recording—will be like an alphabet with which the image will continue to comprehend all experience (as we can form all the words in our language with the letters of the alphabet). Then life will be a repository for death.”<sup>2</sup> <br> <br> <div class="notes"> 1 — David Lamelas, interview with P. Beausse and P. Bal Blanc, included in the booklet of the exhibition “David Lamelas: L’effet .cran” at the CAC Br.tigny and BDV, 2004.<br> 2 — Adolfo Bioy Casares, The Invention of Morel, trans. Ruth L. C. Simms (New York: New York Review of Books, 1964), p. 82. </div>
David LAMELAS <br><i>Interview with Marguerite Duras</i>, 1970-2014 <br>16 mm black and white film; sound; ten black and white photographs and ten pages of hand-written text <br>6’ 30’’ (in loop) <br>17,8 × 24,3 cm (unframed photographs) <br>29,7 × 21 cm (unframed texts)
David LAMELAS <br><i>Interview with Marguerite Duras</i>, 1970-2014 <br>16 mm black and white film; sound; ten black and white photographs and ten pages of hand-written text <br>6’ 30’’ (in loop) <br>17,8 × 24,3 cm (unframed photographs) <br>29,7 × 21 cm (unframed texts)
David LAMELAS <br><i>Interview with Marguerite Duras</i>, 1970-2014 <br>16 mm black and white film; sound; ten black and white photographs and ten pages of hand-written text <br>6’ 30’’ (in loop) <br>17,8 × 24,3 cm (unframed photographs) <br>29,7 × 21 cm (unframed texts)
David LAMELAS <br><i>Interview with Marguerite Duras</i>, 1970-2014 <br>16 mm black and white film; sound; ten black and white photographs and ten pages of hand-written text <br>6’ 30’’ (in loop) <br>17,8 × 24,3 cm (unframed photographs) <br>29,7 × 21 cm (unframed texts)
 

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