This November, UCCA welcomes an exhibition that offers a new way of thinking about perspective, perception and the eyes. Parallax is a site-specific installation by Kolkoz, a French duo known for their diverse artistic practice and bold, creative use of materials. Whether they are working with sculpture, drawings, installations, performance art, or video games, or even manning the turntables as DJs, Kolkoz employs wit and humour to unite seemingly discordant artworks and explore the boundaries between the real and the virtual.
The title of the exhibition, Parallax, refers to a displacement or difference in the apparent position of an object due to a change in the position of the observer. The works that adorn the walls of the UCCA Nave illustrate this concept to the fullest. There are four ornate sculptures composed entirely of picture frames nested within each other to create a charmingly framed optical illusion, a series of photographs of the artists hamming it up as “tourists” at various museums around the world, and a series of photographs – taken by NASA during the 1960s – of astronauts training in Arizona for the now-legendary moon landing. In each framed work, photograph and video installation, Kolkoz playfully questions the position of the viewer, toys with a duality both literal and figurative, and succeeds in upending our optical sensibilities and spatial assumptions.
Kolkoz is a French art collective composed of Samuel Boutruche (b. 1972, Avranches) and Benjamin Moreau (b. 1973, Paris). They have participated in a wide range of solo exhibitions, group shows and art fairs around the world, with major shows at OMR Gallery, Mexico (2011); Bass Museum of Art, Miami (2011); Grand Palais, Paris (2011); Wentrup Gallery, Berlin (2010); a 2009 Armory show and Musee des Beaux Arts de Mulhouse, France (2007), among others. The two artists currently live and work in Paris under the Kolkoz moniker.