Ange Leccia


For his third solo exhibition at the Almine Rech Gallery in Paris, Ange Leccia (b. in Minerviu, Corsica, in 1952) is returning to a visual idiom which has been somewhat eclipsed by cinema in recent years. The new pieces he will show on this occasion – “arrangements” and photographs – fit into an ongoing reflection he began in the early eighties, at the time of his first exhibitions.

Although his work has centred from the start on the topic of cinema, the latter has been considered from a range of perspectives: whether moving images or film stills, filmic devices or mechanisms, light, darkness, sound, …

Leccia handled his first Super 8 camera in the sixties when in high school in Bastia. He went on to explore all fields of research, and made his first film, Stridura, in 1978, casting Pierre Clémenti in the leading role. He soon departed from the contingencies of production, however, and focused his research on the visual arts: he exhibited projectors with no images, fragments of film reels, metallic storage boxes allegedly containing films; he played the soundtracks of films he liked (Godard’s, notably); he talked about his installations – he prefers the term “arrangements” – and film stills. Ange Leccia stages everyday objects – projectors, TV sets, cars, motorbikes, … – which he uses to generate unlikely combinations, triggering unexpected emotional responses, suspended moments of time in which things become crystallized. An “image-maker,” Ange Leccia uses the most simple means to draw out the full force of images. For this exhibition he has created a series of square wooden columns with a deliberately minimalist aspect.

The interior of each column is lined with mirrors, and each contains a Super 8 projector featuring an empty reel, yet whose bright images and luminosity reflect endlessly on the inner panels. This simple creation plays simultaneously on the device’s manifold reflections, the luminous vibrations and the projector’s humming noise. Leccia says he likes the paradox at the heart of these pieces: the seeming outer coldness that contrasts with what the viewer can discover as he approaches the column. The projector is here seen as a machine stripped bare, but it is also a dream machine, used to create images and generate meaning.

He has also chosen to present photographic prints based on record covers from his collection, images related to moments in his own history. The exhibition will also feature a large black and white print showing three film stills from his own work. Set in darkness, it will be lit by the beam of a Super 8 projector. A fragile device, the mechanism hums while fleeting images flicker…

Françoise-Claire Prodhon