ccc od ccc od

exhibition « chambre d’huile »

08 march to 01 june 2014


This second personal exhibition dedicated to Per Barclay focuses on a particular aspect of his work : pictures of  “liquid floored” spaces. From the end of the eighties, Per Barclay regularly applies the same short lived installation procedure to different places : the floor is covered in black oil, water, wine or blood. It thus becomes a reflective surface doubling the image of the place while opening it to the breathtaking depth of a virtual remote place.
Per Barclay there introduces a site specific installation using that photography oriented procedure. The White Cube space becomes an abysmal black hole for the duration of the exhibition. The exhibition displays a collection of photographs, from the first one taken in 1989 to the most recent ones realised in Chinon in partnership with the CCC (2006) and the Merz Foundation (2007).


Per Barclay often uses liquid materials and he sometimes set them in motion in his installations or sculptures. In the « liquid floors » photographs, the liquid covering the floor produces a strange feeling. It creates a tension between the aesthetic contemplation of a perfectly reflected image and the feeling of anxiety you get when you stare at the invasion of a space by a body that is both living and dead still at the same time.


By covering the floors of places with very different styles and purposes, be it neutral or easily recognisable (such as a baroque palace, a fishing cabin, the vault of a bank or an art gallery), the liquid, and especially the black oil, creates a mirror surface. It reveals what the eye can’t see of these unfit and uncrossable spaces. In this work, Per Barclay turns the spatial and sensory bearings upside down. The dark reflects create a virtual duplicate of the place and generate a sort of vacuum as well. It carves the real space out of another negative space, a fictional space.


This exhibition is organised in partnership with the Merz Foundation in Turin.
It is supported by the Royal Ambassy of Norway.