Announcement of the winners
Contemporary Talents 10th edition

Last March, five committees of experts selected the works or projects of 30 finalists from among 794 candidates from 70 countries.

The 2021 Grand Jury, chaired by Jean-Noël Jeanneney, is composed of :

Constance de Monbrison – Head of the Insulinde collections, musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac (Paris)
Alfred Pacquement – Honorary General Curator of Heritage (Paris)
Chiara Parisi – Director of the Centre Pompidou – Metz (Metz)
Ernest Pignon-Ernest – Artist (Paris)
Roland Wetzel – Director of the Museum Tinguely (Basel)

On June 11, the jury selected the four 2021 winners from among the finalists, who will benefit from a group exhibition in the Foundation’s art center, a bilingual publication and the acquisition of their work. The works of Bianca Bondi, Elivia Teotski, the EthnoGraphic collective and Sidorenko-Dutca, will join the Foundation’s collection.

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The laureats

Bianca Bondi

Born in 1986 in Johannesburg (South Africa) | Lives and works in Île-de-France (France)

Pluridisciplinary, its practice involves the activation of objects and often develops in connection with the site in which it intervenes. The materials she works with are chosen for their transformative potential or intrinsic properties. Her work has been exhibited in Plato (Czech Republic, 2017), TagTeam Studio (Norway, 2017), MoCo (France, 2018) BOZAR (Belgium, 2019), Sferik (Mexico, 2019), Het HEM (Netherlands, 2020), and in the context of the Lyon Biennial in 2019 and Busan Biennial in 2020.

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The Wishing Well II, 2020. Sculpture, 70 x 33 x 25 cm. 

 

This sculpture by the artist Bianca Bondi is composed of a small stool in which various materials can be found: salt dough, coins, leather gloves. As the title indicates, «The Wishing Well» – wishing good luck – recalls a wishing well where the concept is to toss a coin and make a wish. The work is part of a larger series also entitled Wishing Well : the artist wanted to reconsider the automatic act of asking and replace it with recognition. When copper coins are thrown into these works by visitors who are prompted to do so, a material transformation takes place, the liquid oxidises the coins, and the coins change the colour of the water. This oxidation produces verdigris, which is a material associated with benevolence. Like the symbolism of the outstretched hand, here represented by a leather glove, which simultaneously asks to receive as much as it offers help, the hand symbolizes duality reminding us that we always have a choice regarding our intentions and actions. 

Elvia Teotski

Born in 1983 in Toulouse (France)  | Lives and works in Marseille (France)

Elvia Teotsky’s original route was not intended for the practice of art. Her studies were first of all in the field of agronomy and sociology of the rural world. She finally obtained her DNSEP at the Beaux-Arts de Toulon in 2014. Her work explores the precarious nature of the most humble materials: from soap bubble to grain of dust, from gum peel to mite heap, from gelatine leaf to street waste. The – exaggerated – interest shown in all these little things gives a curious and distant look at the banal and the ordinary.

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Spleen microbien 2.0, 2020. Installation, variables dimensions.

 

This collection of shapes corresponds to the stabilised version of an earlier installation, Microbial Spleen, consisting of a set of gelatinous columns made from a natural gelling agent extracted from a red algae known as agar-agar. As soon as they were removed from the moulds, the columns began their organic metamorphosis on contact with air and under the effect of the development of a microbiota on the surface. This metamorphosis is also accompanied by another phenomenon of desiccation, due to the inevitable evaporation of their main constituent, water. Thus producing the archaeology of their own existence, these fossil works bear the traces of their decomposition and highlight the entropic deconstruction of decay. This version 2.0 thwarts the register of disappearance and asserts with humour a never-ending return of informs. 

Collectif EthnoGraphic

Born in 1957, 1978 and 1979 in Juiz de Fora (Brazil), Ploemeur and Caen (France) | Living and working between France and Brazil

 

«Going to meet…»: this is the metrology pursued by the EthnoGraphic collective that Émilie Renault and Ghislain Botto founded in 2010. The collective uses ethnography as a means of approach and associates it with a transdisciplinary contemporary artistic production. The works produced are inscribed in the public space as places dedicated to collective experimentation in order to trigger debate, provide tools and transmit. Letícia Panisset, a Brazilian ceramist, joins the collective on the Fazer Viver project in 2017.

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InventaRios, 2019. Installation, 40 x 1600 x 40 cm.

 

The work InventaRios is the restitution of a more global project of the artists entitled, FazerViver mixing ceramics, video editing and taking the form of a landscape. The title means at the same time, «Inventar Rio» or «Inventing the river to mean the river», «Inventariar Rios» or «Inventing the river to inventory a watershed». This project was carried out by the EthnoGraphic collective for three years on lifestyles in the Sertão, a remote region of Minas Gerais in Brazil. Letícia Panisset, Ghislain Botto and Émilie Renault travelled with a map throughout the Capivari basin and asked the inhabitants to name anonymous rivers on the map while recording the abundant flow of water-related stories. Gradually a sensitive mapping of the river and its tributaries emerges, revealing the intimate experiences that residents have with their waterways. They have identified no less than 93 ways of naming water: «my water», «such beautiful water», «water that rains» or «water that replenishes my house». In the course of the encounters and individual stories, a gradual disappearance of watercourses is taking shape.

Sidorenko-Dutca (collectif)

Born in 1995 in Bender (Moldova) and Gornyak (Russia) | Live and work in Bender (Moldova)

 

Carolina Dutca works with photography, video, installation and text. Her artistic projects are linked to the theme of relationships, home, nature and memory. In collaboration with Valentin Sidorenko, she plays with time. They recall fairy tales, childhood and naughtiness. In addition to photography and animation, Valentin Sidorenko works with documentary films.

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Apa, 2020. Photographs, 15 x (100 x 80) cm.

 

The Apa series of photographs was taken on the banks of the Dniester River in the Transnistrian region of Moldova, where the white water lilies are currently endangered. The series tells the story of a former biology teacher, Elena Nikolaevna, who used to go to the river every day to feed the fish with biscuits. When she was a child, her father liked to tell her that about 300 million years ago, on the banks of the Dniester River, there lived a particular species of amphibian, neither aquatic nor terrestrial, they were very discreet: the Labyrinthodontia Buccellatum. One day, Elena discovered an egg of this species on the banks of the river. She named it Apa, which means «water» in Moldavian. Every Friday she collects waste with this creature, whom she considers her child, at the river’s edge to make magic water lily mats with him.