13 screens. 13 videos. 13 monologs. 12 characters : a homeless person, an architect, a worker, a housewife, a scientist, a news anchor, a Russian coregraph… 1 actress : Cate Blanchett, staged by the amazingly talented german artist, Julian Rosefeldt. This is Manifesto.
Futurism, Architecture, Situationism, Pop Art, Cinema… Each video covers a different theme. Cate Blachett recites several monologues by quoting some of the XXth century’s most famous artists (Sol LeWitt ,Yvonne Rainer, Lars Von Trier…).
At the first video, I was quite dubious. It was a very… conceptual art, you know ? I spent 10 minutes in front of the screen, trying to understand the aim, the sense of it, to understand why I heard so many rave comments for something that seemed totally senseless to me.
Okay, I may be a bit exaggerating. The idea to make the actress play different characters, in different circumstances, was original, her performance was… remarkable, and the staging was, with no doubt, made by a great artist. But the problem is that it took me a while to understand the aim of the exhibition.
But from the time I understood it, it became waaaaay more interesting. I think that putting together these great quotes, taken out of their original context, associated with different images which they have absolutely no link to, contributes to give them a new birth, a new sens, an importance. Those words’s historic meaning is challenged, redefined and modified by the modern world. The public is lead to enter the artist’s game, and tries unconsciously to find a link between the image and the words.
I. Loved. It.
Unfortunately it’s already finished, because the exhibition only lasted until the 20th of April at the Palais des Beaux Arts. Anyway you can still go to Julian Rosefeldt‘s website to discover his work, which is really surprising !