Alain Bublex

22 Sep - 04 Nov 2006

"Chambre froide, bricolage, outils, machines"

“ Paradise Vendors, Incorporated, was housed in what had formerly been an automobile repair shop, the dark ground floor of an otherwise unoccupied commercial building on Poydras Street. The garage doors were usually open, giving the passerby an acrid nostriful of boiling hot dogs and mustard and also of cement soaked over many years by automobile lubricants and motor oils that had dripped and drained from Harmons and Hupmobiles. The powerful stench of Paradise Vendors, Incorporated, sometimes led the overwhelmed and perplexed stroller to glance through the open door into the darkness of the garage. There his eye fell upon a fleet of large tin hot dogs mounted on bicycle tires. It was hardly an imposing vehicular collection. Several of the mobile hot dogs were badly dented. One crumpled frankfurter lay on its side, its one wheel horizontal above it, a traffic fatality.”
John Kennedy Toole, A Confederacy of Dunces, 1980.

According to the artist Alain Bublex, the space of a gallery exemplifies the dual, even contradictory, function of the hotdog stand and garage. It is a space that resists being compartmentalized and classified. What are these places out side of places, nonetheless very real, that open up the possibility of a site-specific spatiality? What are these empty periods of time, suspended between two marked out moments, where everything is permanently questioned? In this time of excessive consumption (of time, space and energy) the gallery, seen as a “counter site” , provides the artist with an opportunity to invite the viewer to roam free, on a perilous exploration: of a no man’s land that one discovers in a car when lost in the middle of nowhere; of a suspended time, which would be revealed by a journey undertaken in a windowless fast train. We discover the exhibition, under the guise of taking a walk leads nowhere in particular, but which teaches us (camera slung over our shoulder and map in hand) to properly observe the landscape. If there is a connective thread to all this meandering it would be the planned absence of an aim or end result. Managing to keep the work in a constant state of construction seems to be Alain Bublex’s particular “challenge”. He transforms each work into a project and as a result of their incompletion he highlights objects, places and forgotten moments that would otherwise be left in the dark. The visit leaves you with an indefinable aftertaste; the troubling observation that with each work Alain Bublex seems to slip further from one’s grasp. One wonders where he is to be found and at what moment we will stumble across him...
Anne-Valérie Gasc

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