Passage is a dialogical exhibitions between Paul Hance (FR&USA), Brunhilde Bordeaux-Groult. (FR) and Robert Elfgen (DE). These 3 artists have in common a deep love for the noble materials, and they conceive manufacturing and manual work as a practice of the self.
Paul Hance’s handmade glass mirror series RASA is a body of work with 15 differently shaped and colored mirrors. The distorted reflections vary from the image one uses to inspect oneself, it is rather a “mirror” for the search of new meanings. Its name, Rasa, is a Sanskrit expression for a concept in Indian arts about the aesthetic flavor of any visual, literary or musical work that evokes an emotion or feeling in the reader or audience, but cannot be described.
A distorted mirror initiates a journey of oneself, states Paul Hance. In the shamanic tradition of Mongolia, mirrors are a key instrument in looking into and building a line between the body and the soul. In Gabon, the rituals of Iboga, the mirror is also a tool to awaken a person to his/her consciousness.
Paul Hance interlinked his large and continuous exploration on the respectful and ceremonial handling of materials with the cultural uses of the mirror as device to explore the self and the (soul) psyche.
In fact, mirror manufacturing can be read as a metaphor for the interconnectedness of one’s journey through life:
Producing mouth blown glass is a research of oxides, oxidation-reductions, temperatures and infinite precision. In the atomic structure of glass, the atoms are disorganized and find a new order during the transition phase from liquid to solid state. This chaos allows to change the nature of the glass. Using different minerals, such as cobalt and gold, color appears as a new property, it becomes an alchemical process of transformation.
The Rasa mirrors are in dialogue with benches designed and manufactured by Brunhilde Bordeaux-Groult (FR) and Robert Elfgen (DE), which are essential to this exhibition, as they invite the viewer to slow down and experience the “passage” of the self. Both artists put much focus in their practices on the nobility of the material, especially wood and textiles, as well as the significance of hand-crafting.
Gerresheimer Straße 33, 40211 Düsseldorf, Germany