David Douard (b. 1983, Perpignan, France) is undoubtedly one of the most intriguing artistic revelations of recent years. Known for his sculptural assemblages and mixed-media installations, his work explores a broad range of references —poetry, the history of science, technology, animism, low-tech and mainstream culture— nurturing allegorical narratives based on contagious relationships between worlds we’d normally expect to be mutually hermetic.
O’Ti’Lulabies, the artist’s first solo exhibition in Portugal, brings together and displays David Douard’s complete vocabulary. Alluding to a kind of melody for sleepless children, O’Ti’Lulabies, both shelters and reveals — it chants, in rhythm, a contagious narrative, the organic and anarchic characteristics of which are meticulously composed by the artist. Its language contaminates and corrupts surfaces akin to a peculiar sort of canvas: metal grids, vertical blinds, bay windows, and partitions are all an invitation for expression. With these components, Douard plays with superposition and transparency in an array of gradations and layers, giving a fluid materiality to virtual contents, revealing and exposing a substance otherwise concealed.
In this constructed phantasmagoria submerging the visitor, Douard focuses on the expressive and metaphorical potential of the forms he hybridizes and sets into motion, building a revealing and representative constellation of signs where protest, poetry and discord compose the background of his work. David Douard: O’Ti’Lulabies was produced by the Serralves Foundation, Museum of Contemporary Art, Porto in collaboration with the artist and the Galerie Chantal Crousel, Paris and Rodeo London / Piraeus. The exhibition is curated by Philippe Vergne and Filipa Loureiro.
Contemporary Gallery Serralves Museum of Contemporary Art, Porto
May 12 – November 6, 2022
Fundação de Serralves – Museu de Arte Contemporânea
Photo: Filipe Braga