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Fade To Black II
(Liam Gillick, 2003), diptych


Fluorescent ink on paper
2 sets of 11 prints (one diptych, one triptych and 6 single prints) with a backup CD
185 x 120 cm each
Edition 3/6 (+1 A.P.)
Inv. Nr. 138

Born in 1964 in Oran, Algeria
Lives and works in Paris, France

The Fade to Black II series is an ensemble of silkscreen posters evoking various moments of the artist’s career between 1993 and 2003, such as events in the artist’s experience and aborted or ephemeral projects, printed out in fluorescent ink. This peculiar technique challenges the act of seeing, since the visibility of the images is conditioned by the successive exposure and non-exposure to light. With the lights on, the posters are, as the artist says, “literally overexposed,” while in the dark, the images inevitably fade with time. Therefore, by defying perception, the printed scenes are both present and absent. Like ghost images of lost works, this series, which function as “Post-It notes” for Parreno, recalls the process of memory and questions the visibility conditions of a work of art.

Philippe Parreno is part of a generation of artists, together with Pierre Huyghe, Dominique Gonzales-Foerster, Liam Gillick, Rirkrit Tiravanija, etc., who, in the 1990s, worked at renewing the standards of the object of art, focusing on the conditions of its appearance and its display, through the use of collaborative practices, uncanny and common media or exhibition protocols. Parreno’s work questions reality, its commentary, its memory and, by doing so, its representation. It deals with the construction of new realities, often by using fiction and varied forms encompassing the virtual world, books, scores, scenarios, performances, films, posters, wallpapers, carpets, etc. The passing of time is a central concern in his work and a strategy to deal with reality. One of his most famous time-based works is the full-length feature film co-directed with Douglas Gordon, Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait (2006). For the duration of an actual football match, seventeen 35mm cameras focused on each move of the French footballer Zinedine Zidane to produce a spectacular real-time portrait.