Le Cartel de la Friche, 41 rue Jobin – 13003 Marseille
This is a group exhibition in which AC/E is supporting the participation of Spaniard Adrià Julià along with artists Bas Jan Ader, Meris Angioletti, Ali Cherri, André Cadere, Mathis Collins, Alighiero Boetti, Jimmie Durham, Naufus Ramirez-Figueroa, Julia Meltzer and David Thorne with Rami Farah, Gilad Ratman, Olve Sande, Benjamin Valenza, Guido van der Werve, Nancy Spero and writer Golan Haji.
The exhibition, curated by Elena Lydia Scipioni (Rome, 1979), explores the history of the artists and intellectuals who sought refuge in Marseilles when the Second World War broke out, and waited for an opportunity to escape to North America. In 1941, they stayed at the Villa Air Bel, where André Breton and a group of surrealists – Victor Brauner, Oscar Domínguez, Jaques Harold, André Masson and Frederic Delanglade – created a deck of hybrid cards (a mixture of traditional playing cards and tarot cards) known as ‘Le Jue de Marseille’ as entertainment. These cards are now held in the Musée Cantini, and are being shown especially on this occasion.
In this context Adrià Juliá (Barcelona, 1974) has been invited to create a new work based on Siegfried Kracauer’s texts – ‘Two planes’, written in 1926, ‘Apparition at Le Cannebière’ (1928 / 1931) – and Walter Benjamin’s texts ‘Marseille’ and ‘Hashish’. Julià explores the spatial, social and geometric relations that Karacauser describes around a square in Marseilles, but without disclosing its exact location or name. The text describes the square, which is now unknown or has disappeared, as an everyday, controlled theatrical space. It can also be found in the text written by Walter Benjamin on Marseilles and even in the letters exchanged by the two abovementioned authors. Julià treats this square as a space for speculation and promotion, with different interlinked stories and chronologies. For this purpose he has made a film that is projected in the exhibition space and refers to the architectural framework dealt with in Kracauer’s text. Julià sets out to make a slight shift in the focus of historical references in order to highlight the key role played by Marseilles. (AC Española press-release)