23.06.22 - 23.10.22 — La Centrale.vitrine, Brussels
‘Expecting my mind to be in a better shape’
A solo exhibition by French artist Axel Korban.
'imagine the outline of a hand printed onto a transparent surface. It can appear to be either a left or a right hand, depending on the position of the observer. Left or right only make sense within the boundaries of two-dimensional space; once you move into the third dimension, left and right become observer-dependent, rather than independent, characteristics. Their outline is neither left nor right, but sometimes left and sometimes right. This is because right and left hands are identical but asymmetrical. Kant called these objects “incongruent counterparts,” known in geometry as enantiomorphic objects. Enantiomorphs are objects whose geometrical properties are exactly alike, but which are not congruent: were one to move a right hand onto the left-hand position, the two wouldn’t match. The thumb would always be found on the opposite side. Though this might seem trivial, for Kant enantiomorphs were tied to the very nature of space.'
Ana Teixeira Pinto, “Enantiomorphs in Hyperspace: Living and Dying on the Fourth Dimension,” e-flux journal 72 (April 2016)
In the late eighteenth century, philosopher Immanuel Kant sees through this mental exercise a practice of metaphysical geometrics of identity and difference. He demonstrates that perception is fuelled by the subjective experience of the observer : one has to experiment, walk through a space to grasp its dimensions. Such an introduction fits adequately Axel Korban's work, and the multiple operations at the core of his work, presented in the exhibition 'Expecting my mind to be in a better shape'.
Exploring the status and nature of the forms that populate a tridimensional space, and how they transition to the physical world ; he investigates throughout his practice this process of displacement, analysis and reconstruction, thereby using computer generated graphics as an aesthetic translation device. In 'Expecting my mind to be in a better shape' Korban holds dear the notion of image-conflict, whether by way of scrutinising war-report images, or approaching them as synthetic agglomerates ; Korban focuses on imagining the forms and scenographic potentials these images enclose. The exhibition intends to demonstrate the re-making of Axel Korban's personal aesthetic : organic ovoïd shapes, round and polished shaped objects that directly stem from 3D computer graphics and got physically made in resin and metal. Far from the slender futurism from the early twentieth century, Axel Korban's work is revolving about deceptive futurism, postmodern images and forced hi-tech sophistication that fails to find a proper origin, a real function among objects. 'Expecting my mind to be in a better shape' intends to address the foundation of a practice that found its pleasure in virtual exhibitions : populating real places with virtual objects and vice versa. At the occasion of a personal exhibition at La Centrale.vitrine, Axel Korban will bridge these two worlds in a synthetic and multidimensional installation.
The exhibition aims at showing the asymmetries and dis-contiguities at work in Korban's transition from soft to hardware. He imagines ghost forms and partial objects as Lacan writes : 'pieces of the real brought back to the body without images of identification'. Partial objects take up full signification when brought back to Korban's syro-lebanese origines, an inherited stasis between reconstruction and destruction, an apparent technicality without functionality.