Romain Kronenberg & ses personnages “Boaz” at Kunsthalle, Centre d’Art Contemporain Mulhouse


Terms remaining unsaid are shed.

Boaz is higher than all the tale of a story. A tale learned by chance in the memento stores of the modest island of Procida, off the coast of Naples, the story of a forgotten voice on an outdated recorder that was remarkably acquired. On an abandoned tape, the peaceful but important voice of a child tells the tale of a youthful orphan, liked by all, whose mere existence prompts symptoms and acts of devotion from these close to him. This tale is the tale of Boaz and his adoptive loved ones : his brother Malachie, his sister Deborah, and their father Amos.

Romain Kronenberg began to create this sophisticated venture in spring 2017, when he initially came across the tape-recorder. A project that centres on the question of the sacred, which is omnipresent in Boaz’s opportunely rediscovered story, very first and foremost in the pure but ambiguous marriage collecting the two inseparable brothers. For just one is the Prophet, and the other 1 the Mystic. The sacred appears carefully in the life of the younger boy, Boaz, who we never see but who is unanimously admired. He is invisible, but alive. If Boaz is the Legend, Malachie, the Mystic, is the reflection of the collective fascination that coalesces close to the orphan and the young guy he will become, a fascination that intensifies with the passing of time. Boaz will inevitably turn into the willing martyr of this quest, the collateral hurt of a piety that proves much too good. This very simple tragedy unfolds serenely, as all of its actors know full perfectly what is to appear, for the Legend are not able to are living.

The exhibition delivers collectively a sequence of works, movies, objects and paperwork that retrace Kronenberg’s exploration, just about every of which relates to the central novel that structures the full. Performing outwards from a methodology designed for his 2019 exhibition, Tout est vrai [All is true], Kronenberg unfolds this new proposition around a narrative spine that shapes the functions and photos that are created. The consequence, Boaz, is a dense venture in which variety and narrative are inseparable and where it is not possible to decide which a single precedes the other. The exhibition sets up a mise-en-abime of the authentic tale to take a look at the method of mythmaking. This fragmented hagiography has its personal discreet relics: crosses traced on walls as signs of devotion, dolls as believers inspiring exceptional feelings, as effectively as relatives images, icons in Prussian blue, and sacred words and phrases that swarm across the partitions. Boaz, film is the movie of a movie: it paperwork the development of Boaz, their film by linking it to the story provided by a mysterious investigator who, twenty yrs on, is continue to looking to make clear that which can’t be stated.

Boaz is made as a modern fantasy that attracts on Mircea Eliade’s exploration into the rituals and beliefs as perfectly as the Melanesian Cargo cult. The sacred aura that surrounds this task is neither abnormal nor surprising, but alternatively a modest, each day type of sacrality: mystic, but without thriller. It is the destiny of those people who bear the bodyweight of a modern society that lacks guiding lights and that longs for transcendence.

— Coline Davenne, curator

At Kunsthalle, Centre d’Art Contemporain Mulhouse
until eventually April 30, 2022


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