A solo show by Alois Godinat
September 4th - October 9th, 2010.

Aloïs Godinat, young artist from Switzerland, was born in Lausanne in 1978. His work could be qualified of an elegant and subersive art of balance, elaborating compositions of elemental style teetering between aestheticism and conceptualism. From minimalist experiments to John Cage’s (discplined) action or appropriationist movements of the 80s, Aloïs Godinat’s art derives from a formal and conceptual repertoire with an ingenuity that spares him of the pitfalls of tautology.

In Godina’s work, whose installations seem strikingly under control at a first glance, repetition plays an integral part in the creation process. Each piece of art proceeds from an attempt to reappropriate a “déjà-là” objects or pieces of objects taken from a vast “instrumentarium”, whose original shape he repeats while re-creating it. “I create those objects using the suggestion of their implicit abstraction” he explains. He does not mean to get implicated into a power struggle at the expense of the object but to attest a transition; his position being defined by discretion and reserve. Thus, Aloïs Godinat does not try to “master” the material, but to understand and to bring to light the unknown side of its expressive capacities.The abstract enjoins the concrete form to show up, pushing back the closing of the meaning to the advantage of the expression of a formal rhythmic out of any figurative requirement.

To this artist, the interest in abstraction is not a product of a pure theoretical research but the result of a dynamic stance. The creator’s touch, modest but meticulous intermediary/go-between, is quite readable, noticeable on a hint, existing but yet never triumphant.

The audience’s act as well is implicitly stimulated, like in the case of the “ grattoir à dos” (back scratcher) or the series of wrapped posters. The scratcher, like any other tool, suggests an action in order to use it, as for the posters, suggesting the action of opening that would allow to see their content. Ambiguity still remains since Aloïs Godinat’s objects seem to be standing thanks to a carefully calculated balance that does not allow any functional activation of those objects.

Thus, if the action of the audience is simultaneously called for and denied, the artist’s, effective, can be understood as a tribute to the object to which he gives a new power of suggestion, that is to say an unexpected poetic function. Their anachronistic or strictly instrumental nature renders the objects obsolete; they are suddenly freed from their subordination to a specific use, and sent to a state of prolific indetermination.

Therefore, Aloïs Godinat’s work does not properly rely on the performance as a genre, but on a subtle duality between a shape and the action that is going to work on it; the accomplishment of an acrobat or an archaeologist measuring the gaps so that each look at it would reinvent the object and allows its story to last longer.

Clara Guislain translated by Claire Jeannet