Clémence de La Tour du Pin (*1986 Roanne FR) is a multidisciplinary artist working primarily in sculpture, painting, and olfactory media. Her visual investigation is informed by private and cultural inheritances, metaphysical epistemologies, phenomenology, fiction, and failure.
The artistic practice of La Tour du Pin is based on experiment, drawing on a plethora of materials and objects to create experiential work: fabric, cardboard, metal, wood, latex, bamboo, paint as well as perfumes are combined to become abstract compositions that reveal architectural forms and bodily elements. The varied, non-traditional forms her works take result in a deliberately ambiguous work shaped by the viewer’s perception.
Curator Jennifer Teets writes about her most recent body of work: “When reflecting on the work of Clémence de La Tour du Pin, I’m drawn to speak of an agency that is cloaked, obscured or hinged. Whether through fabric installations, olfactory media or object assemblage, the idea of infestation is a concept that is maneuvered in her work through a cluster of less than usual associations. A dilapidated family home, the varied complexities of estrangement and chronic illness, the consideration of skin– it is in the unveiling of these hermetic, strangely familiar, and obfuscated spaces and contexts where La Tour du Pin renders them sculpture.
Cultural inheritance is a predominant theme in her work as well, not only as a set of values transferred as goods, but as a spiritual occupation capable of prolongation. Something moves in these apparently empty spaces that exist independent of the human subject. What is the hold over a body that longs to sustain its past? What seems relevant is how La Tour du Pin exposes near animate presence through parasitic means, both in the psyche and in the body. Some call this possession, others spiritual attunement.
The artist’s foray into umbrella culture might appear as an unusual gambit, but her interest is of a different order. The umbrella is a unique entity that is not owned, but in a state of flux. Its morphology has rarely shifted in the history of time, yet through the artist’s reworking, as shown here, it is leveraged as encasing, sealed with the kiss of a bow. These boxes have been made from the ribs of umbrellas found tossed away onto French countryside landscapes. Their spokes have been molded and warped, their dusty silk skins wrapped and fastened, allowing us to see the inside from the perspective of the outside. The brolly casts a clement shadow, but shades can also be specters. By taking everyday usage La Tour du Pin grants this accessory conceptual rigor: a certain atmosphere or mood points to unknown forces or past lives resisting simple hermeneutic interpretation."
Clémence de La Tour du Pin lives and works between Rotterdam and Paris, where she currently holds a residency at Cité Internationale des Arts. She is a previous participant of De Ateliers, Amsterdam and MSA^ The Mountain School of Arts, Los Angeles, in addition to her education from London School of Art, Architecture & Design. Last summer she was a resident at CAPC – musée d’art contemporain de Bordeaux and in the fall she will have a solo exhibition at Smart Objects in Los Angeles and a duo exhibition with Adolphe Monticelli at April in Paris in Aerdenhout.
Selected exhibitions include Wschod gallery, Poland (2022); Capc-Musée d'art contemporain de Bordeaux (2021); Smart Objects, Los Angeles (2021); Femtensesse, Oslo (2021); 15 Orient at Balice Hertling, Paris (2021); Hagiwara Projects, Tokyo (2021), Centre d'art contemporain - La Synagogue de Delme, Delme (2019); 1857, Oslo (2017); Dortmunder Kunstverein, Dortmund (2017); SALTS, Basel (2015) and Musée d'Art Moderne de La ViUe de Paris (2015).