A ridiculously large amount of people can’t bear to see objects placed too close to the edge of a surface, particularly if the objects are smashable and the floor is hard. Seeing a glass of water placed dangerously close to a laptop, or a backpack wearer laughing backwards into a teetering sculpture can conjure up a twitching in the fingers that not much else can. But when an artist comes along and slams that feeling – in the form of concrete and iron – down in front of our very eyes, something makes us want to look closer, for a little longer.
Artist and sculptor Fabrice Le Nezet, whose work has taken a dramatic turn in terms of sheer scale, kindly agreed to answer some of our questions about Measure his latest project that illustrates tension with some brutal, contrasting materials.
Tell us a little about Measure how did you come up with the idea?
I come from a scientific background, so mathematics, biology and physics are never too far from my work. For this specific project, I had this idea of an abstract metal structure that would give a feeling of force and tension while being static. I developed the idea and finally came up with this concept of ‘measure’ translated as a group, or family, of three sculptures.
What does Measure represent?
It is a physical representation of the idea of measure. The objective was to materialise tension in a sense, to make the notions of weight, distance and angle palpable.
The clash of materials and weights makes the sculptures almost stressful to look at – is that intentional?
Yes, I wanted the sculptures to be massive and offensive to highlight the idea of tension. My idea was to bring this feeling of extreme tension, as if the structures were almost about to physically break.
Your other projects are quite far removed from Measure – what made you feel the urge to create something large-scale?
Well, on my previous projects, I was already working on shapes simplification, using a minimal range of raw material such concrete or metal. This project was the next step for me as I worked here on simplifying the concept itself. And because of the simplicity of the subject, I wanted it to be obvious and massive.
How important was the lighting to the final look of the sculpture?
I chose a minimal and modern space, something not to distracting that would give priority to the lighting. I decided to go for geometric and sharp shadows to fit with the violence of the sculptures.
What made you choose the specific, bright colours used on the metal rails of ‘measure’? do they represent something?
The extreme saturation of the colors make the shapes vibrant and electric, as if the structure was somehow reaching some breaking point. Also, the vibrant colors help to make the structures of the sculptures stand out.The concrete is a discreet material, so the line structures are. in the end, more important than the element itself.