By John Owoo
(In Accra – Ghana)
An exhibition of works by French artist Alice Raymond that interpret the processes of observation and adaptation to spaces, ended on Friday October 6 at The Mix Design Hub in Accra.
Employing the use of maps, she explores new territories, which take shape in personal cartography – thereby representing the impact of places and perception of the environment – from a physical, social and temporal point of view.
With a deep interest in the concept of Anthropocene, she investigates possible signs that have been neglected in landscapes, which would repair the links of agency between the living and the elements of the world.
Titled “Pendant Que Les Champs Brûlent” – Raymond employs the use of card boxes – some of which have rugged edges. Undeniably, her work is both methodical and playful while forcefully expounding a visual vocabulary that bears direct witness to the web-like links she knits.
In other works, she marshals straw mats while incorporating woven cloths in various colours alongside simple shapes and lines that complement the pieces, which hung on giant transparent glass, which act as boards.
Undeniably, her research addresses issues of displacement, migration, habitat, ecology and language through codification methods. Again, her work expresses itself in a wide range of techniques as they explore abstract artistic expressions through installations and participatory proposals.
These works end up with collective ideas, documentary photographs, drawings, paintings and sculptures that she describes as linguistic documents and texts – a practice that favours raw and reinvested materials as well as a palette from the local context.
Born in France, Raymond grew up in Germany and chose to develop her nomadic practice in Sweden, the United States and Ghana. As a result of her travels, she was naturally interested in geographical maps – the way in which they make it possible to apprehend a territory – and how it translates to the world.
Her works, which are in private and public collections, have been shown in galleries and arts centres in various parts of the world. These include Nubuke Foundation, Foundation for Contemporary Art (Ghana), MoCa Museum of Contemporary Art of North Miami, ICA Institute of Contemporary Art, BoxHeart Gallery (USA) and Innovation and Creativity Center of FRAC-Méca, Cité musée Frugès-Le Corbusier and BIEN Textile Art Biennale in Kranj, Slovenia.
Raymond moved to Ghana with the aim of developing the artistic connections between tradition and contemporary evolution while observing the way things flow. Through a diversity of practices, she questions our relationship to the environment, the way we adapt to it and perhaps the way in which we should integrate into it.