MARK HACHEM GALLERY
FEMMES AU BORD DE LA CRISE DE GUERRE
Thursday 26. April 2018 | 6:30 – 9 pm
VERNISSAGE JEUDI 26 AVRIL 2018 à partir de 18H30
Exhibition: 27. April – 17. May 2018
Exposition du 27 avril au 17 mai 2018
28, Place des Vosges 75003 PARIS
FEMMES AU BORD
DE LA CRISE DE GUERRE
27. April – 17. May 2018
The exhibition title is evidently a play on words of the Pedro Almodóvar’s film “Mujeres al borde de un attaque de nervios” which, in French, reads “femmes au bord de la crise de nerf”. A film which, according to critics, stands out by its s umptuousdimension and whose subject, with its razorsharp treatment, manages to be both irritating and enticing thanks to a mix of sophisticated and pedestrianassociations. That Hayat finds inspiration from such a charismatic film maker is not meaningless as the themes developed in both are equally powerful. I can’t help but interpret Hayat’s work differently even though we are bathed in that sameambiance of the woman’s condition, whose battles, struggles and challenges are expressed in a hyper tensive and nervous rhythm, tragic and practically underground. Elegance and clarity dominate the exhibition and lead us to a genuine reflexion on womenhood.
Throughout his work, Yves Hayat open or liberates a message by using, paradoxically, both given adver Throughout his work, Yves Hayat open or liberates a message by using, paradoxically, both given advertising codes and his artistic talent, to highlight the current and much needed and inevitable debate of womanhood
in our society.
He forces us to cast our eyes on powerful pieces that provoke us and whose subjects often raise deeply rooted and essential problems that are too often distorted, badly analysed of wrongly appropriated. We can be tempted to find his work contrived but in reality, it is only the expression of the artist’s hypersensitivity.
His relationship with the image, the demiurge game, as well as the technique he uses impose the question of the status of women. This is done without pretence but we feel a hint of criticism regarding the way we look at these issues today. What I mean here is that it almost seems to be good form to denouncethe domination of women, that they feel as genuine violence. But this leaves the door ajar for the intolerable. Women are left
with little choice but to use violence in order to lay claim to beinghuman in their own right. Yves Hayat expresses this with force throughouthis work and particularly so in the series titled “je t’aime”.
In « Concerto facciale », the woman, in codified nuptial regalia, is hurt, marked. Whilst we feel she is resisting, she withdraws intoherself and shuts herself to the environment she is subjected to. We think of The Testament of Mary by Colm Tóibín, where a woman, the Virgin Mary, opposes the image that her son’s former companions is creating about her. Like Mary, the woman in « Concerto facciale» is no dupe and through the artist, she is able to tell the truth.
These women claim their right to be and fight a war to denounce the lack of consideration, the other’s lack of love, the “idées noires” (dark thoughts) that make Coco Chanel cry.
The Kelly bags series demonstrates that despite all the luxury that they may wear or surround themselves with, it changes nothing to the tragedy of their condition
nor to the war they wage. For them real peace is not possible. He turns these militants, not always feminist, women into icons, tired, constrained by the conditioning imposed on them: always resigned to the human predisposition to auto destruct.
I am drawn to these “Fleurs blessées” (flower-women), hurt and restrained by barbed wire, because of the epic proportion of their struggle. Like Ulysses who lost part of his humanity during his long voyage, Women in resistance have no choice but to let go of some of their femininity in order to face a life of struggle. Yet the power of women is contained in their very essence and in the wars they wage. In order to win and to exist when faced with the phallic domination, they must contain, and not give in to, their anger. Even when their “Je t’aime” are wounded and chained in barbed wire. Let Athena inspire the audacity needed to stand up to an absurd world and not fall into despair, as well as motivate the audacity to exist as a lover, completely and tragically.
In “la revue des deux mondes » the contrast shocks at first. These mannequin-women, luxury display windows, are shown next to the other women who are surrounded by violence and misery. It is obvious that they are victims, even when live amongst the glitz and the glamour. They are the same prisoners of an artificial universe where their femininity is demeaned and moulds itself to the ideal
that men desire. Yves Hayat’s message is clear: the ostentation of fashion or luxury
must not anesthetise our thoughts. All the women’s images presented here are a clear message that our world needs to be reinvented. With his unique aestheticism and the using the power of the image, Yves Hayat shows us how we really are.
The pieces he puts before us, these images of chaos, make me melancholy because they force me to reflect on what want to give the Other in lieu of womanhood.
François Birembaux 2018
Originally from Egypt, Yves Hayat first developed his aesthetic sensibilities living in a country enriched with history and cultural diversity. Art was his first love. In 1956, after the Egyptian Revolution, Hayat left for France. For five years, he studied Art
at the Ecole Nationale des Arts Décoratifs of Nice. In 1973, Hayat chooses to go into advertising and marketing, which led him to open his own agency. The creative trade
captivated Hayat. His experience in the field also enabled him to discover and learn to use new forms of technology, and master his techniques. In the 1990s, equipped with those skills, he decided to return to art, rediscovering the old masters, photographing people, the streets, society products, museum paintings and recuperating magazine and web images, which are carefully classified. Hayat is a perfect example of his time: an open mind on society, its streets, its media, its internet. While running his successful advertising business, he starts to show his artwork in galleries. Soon, his art practice took precedence over his profession, which he ended in 2002.
Although Yves Hayat does not consider himself a painter, photographer, or designer, he is widely known as a “plasticien,” an untranslatable French term that refers to an artist who puts the meaning of his work to the fore and uses all the various media and techniques to express it.
Yves Hayat explains: “I admit that I’m more interested in manipulating reality than in recording it. My artwork, between photography, installation, and “Figuration Narrative,” proposes visions where theatricalization is a part of the project. I am a total visual consumer: I film, download, scan, retouch…. as the director of a new reality. Using superimpositions, shifts, and misappropriations, I confront past and present, beauty and horror, luxury and violence, indifference and fanaticism. Through a questioning about the art/politics/media relations,
I try to conceive a critical artwork where the attraction for the culture of media, cinema and advertising shows through. Using modern techniques, my work proposes a report of what our history and our society have thought, generated, transformed, destroyed… while always keeping in mind that when the work of art creates unrest, it evacuates the common place”.
The originality of Yves Hayat’s works lies in the amalgam of artistic perception with images from a communication and information-based society. The titles he gives to his works (Business must go on, Parfum de Révolte, The Icons are Tired, Ma Maculée Conception…) from utterly highjacked advertising slogans, have the effect of giving a meaning to the pollution of our everyday lives. They reveal our identity and display our
own brand. Not a celebration of barbarity, but rather the fascination created by human ambivalence
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