Ballon Rouge is delighted to present an exhibition in two acts with Brussels-based French artist Carlotta Bailly-Borg, in collaboration with VITRINE. The exhibitions will bring together existing with new work, opening on 12 January at Ballon Rouge in Brussels, and on 19 January at VITRINE, Basel.
The series ‘Family Afair’, shown at NEVVEN Gallery in Sweden in early 2021, forms the departure point for the exhibition in Basel. They are a series of vertical scroll works showing tied cords and knots encapsulating Bailly-Borg’s signature-style creatures. The entire space of VITRINE, Basel, with its aquarium-like presence when perceived from the street, will form an extended environment for these figures to roam, which are drawn as if they are hopping from the canvas to rub up against walls and then hide back in the subtle folds of hanged cloth. Their newly found freedom of movement will be enhanced with a play of colour and light to further their etherealness. In Brussels, the artist will present predominantly new, large-scale paintings in which she explores new photo-transferring techniques to infuse her imagery with extra layers and depth.
With a body of work spanning drawing and painting, both on paper, canvas, walls, glass panels and ceramics, the artist is consistently exploring new ways for her emblematic anthropomorphic creatures to inhabit a variety of contexts, probing different tensions and instincts on their way. Her visual imagery is informed by a myriad of trans-historic and trans-cultural references, ranging from medieval manuscripts and Hellenic myths, to Japanese erotic representations and Hindu folklore. These sources of inspiration challenge the artist to constantly reconsider her universe, both in conceptual and technical ways. However, the beings she brings to life remain recognisable: atemporal and gender-fluid. Their bodies occupy spaces in ways that embody all the conflicting feelings that accompany the act of desire. They hide in corners, take a leap, they stretch languidly, they curiously approach and explore one another and merge in lustful symbiosis.
This exhibition is a satellite project organised and curated by Ballon Rouge Collective. VITRINE was hosted at Ballon Rouge’s space in Brussels, BE, during November and December 2021 where they presented a duo exhibition with Tarek Lakhrissi and Charlie Godet Thomas.
Curator: Evelyn Simons
Carlotta Bailly-Borg (b. 1984, France) lives and works in Brussels, BE. She holds a BFA (2005) and an MFA (2010) in Fine Art from École Nationale Supérieure d'Arts de Paris-Cergy, FR. She was nominated for the 22nd Prix Fondation Pernod Ricard, 2021.
Bailly-Borg has exhibited internationally at galleries, museums and biennials including: Fondation Vincent van Gogh, Arles, FR; Goldsmiths CCA, London, UK; Palais de Tokyo, Paris, FR; Michael Horbach Foundation, Cologne, DE; Fondation Ricard, Paris, FR; Baltic Triennial 13, South London Gallery, UK and Kunstihoone, Tallinn, EE; Musée et Jardin Van Buuren, Brussels, BE; Friche Belle de Mai, Marseille, FR; CNEAI, Chatou, FR; Onomatopee, Eindhoven, NL; Everyday Gallery, Anvers, BE; Galerie Sultana, Paris, FR; Bosse & Baum, London, UK; Tunnel Tunnel, Lausanne, DH; HIGH ART, Paris, FR; Efremidis Gallery, Berlin, DE; Galeria Duarte Sequeira, Braga, PT; Studio Amaro, Naples, IT; ATTIC, Brussels, BE; Karma International, Los Angeles, US; Praz Delavallade, Paris, FR; Island, Brussels, BE; DOC, Paris, FR.
Residencies include: Moly Sabata/Fondation Albert Gleizes, Sablons, FR; Le Pavillon Neuflize OBC, Palais de Tokyo’s Creation Laboratory, Paris, FR; Les Verrières, Pont-Aven, FR.
Evelyn Simons (b. 1989. Halle, DE) lives and works in Brussels, BE. She has been the curator for Horst Arts & Music, an organisation blending the worlds of contemporary art and architecture with electronic music, since 2019. Horst organises music festivals, exhibitions in public space and educational labs, and operates on a derelict military base Asiat in Vilvoorde (Brussels' periphery). She combines this position with other freelance activities such as running the residency programme for the private Minimal and Conceptual Art Foundation Fondation CAB in Brussels and Saint-Paul-de-Vence. Simons is currently preparing the launch of a new center for contemporary arts with a focus on the ecological discourse in the countryside South of Brussels called Ter Rijst, together with curator Isabel Van Bos. Simons was aware the Curate Award from Fondazione Prada & Qatar Museums in 2014, which resulted in the exhibition 'Driftwood, or how we surfaced through currents' (2017) at Exarcheia in Athens, GR, and the short film and expo 'The Never Never', with Jeremy Hutchison (2019, in progress and set to travel past various European institutions from 2022 onwards). In 2016 she was curator-in-residence at the Beirut Art Residency, and in 2021 at Villa Lena, Tuscany, IT. Evelyn has a Master's degree in Art Science from Ghent University, and a postgraduate degree in Curatorial Studies from KASK Ghent.