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Colors and meaning in design

The Tripostal in Lille is extending the excellent “Colors, etc.” exhibition until November. »Co-organized with the Ghent Design Museum. The course orchestrated on all the spaces of the building questions our relationship to color, through immersive installations by contemporary artists and designer experiments. It ends in a fascinating investigation into the color work of the painter Van Eyck, staged in a “Pigment Walk” including more than 100 objects.

Installation immersive de Georg Lendorff - First Light - 2021 © Maxime Dufour photographies

Feel, hear, explore, question color … this is the route proposed by curator Siegrid Demyttenaere at Tripostal, in collaboration with Sofie Lachaert for the last part of the exhibition.

Several artists and designers were invited to create in situ installations for’ explore the relationship of the 5 senses with color. Above all sensory, the course is intended to be fun for the general public while being very rich in information on current research for those who wish to deepen the subject. Between effects on the psyche and research into biomaterials, the curator’s aim is to show how the question of color covers wide fields of intervention: For the scientist, the coleur is an effect of spectral variations in visible light while the pigment is a coloration of the living cell. Art and design stand out from science here. Culture faces biology. Color is a psychic notion, a means of communication but above all a feeling. “

An immersive introduction

Upon entering, Liz West takes hold of the columns of the hall to transform them into successive islands of light, dressed in gauze, mirrors and different colors and pushes the visitor to wonder about the light source, and the effect of the perception of the space thus defined. Further on, in “The Secret of Red”, Fernando Laposse questions the history of the cochineal, at the origin of the bright color of a dye. linked to the production of carmic acid. The effect of light on color is then discussed in the presence of sublime “Cairns” by Dawn Bendick. They are composed of pieces of dichroic glass, which has the particularity of changing color depending on the nature of the light, and the artist here simultaneously questions the time which passes in a play of alternation of different light sources, which reproduces a timeline of sunrise and sunset.

Research projects

Alongside other “experience rooms”, the exhibition continues with a floor particularly devoted to current research. The selection of projects exhibited highlights designers in search of solutions, in collaborations with scientists and creators from other disciplines. Among the works exhibited, Studio Thus That notably designs pottery enamelled from the oxides contained in the “red mud” resulting from residual products of the aluminum industry and consisting of bauxite.

Christien Meindertsma presents Fiber Market, which is based on Fibresort technology which analyzes and sorts clothes according tothe type of yarn that composes them, to check the veracity of the composition label. Caroline Cotto for her part has composed a color chart made from fragments of eggshells that she has unearthed all over the world, and highlights the proximity of their shades to those of the skin. Along with her work on black pigment, Hella Jongerius demonstrates with The Evening Textile how to create a wide spectrum of colors from a limited number of threads. Naving G. Khan Dossos studied the effectscolor in the hospital as part of workshops held at St Mary’s Hospital in London.

Lynne Brouwer, for her part, studies how color can help control the discomfort of a situation by taking an interest in places as well diverse and difficult as crematoriums, police stations and courts. Visitors will also discover culinary design performances by Celine Pelcé, such as a striking installation by Penique Productions which offers a special immersion in a warm yellow through a form of sculpture to live.

The mystical investigation

The last part of the exhibition opens with an installation of Studio Plastique showcasing the history of the color blue from panels of glass colored in a particular blue tone of historical significance, like a glass timeline. A beautiful introduction to the walk around the universe of colors arranged around the universe of colors by Van Eyck, based on the analysis of 13 details of The Mystic Lamb . Each detail is associated with a group of works that take up a specific color in the altarpiece. A perspective in an orchestrated “Pigment Walk”with the presentation of creations by more than 100 designers and artists, who obviously enhance an expression of these selected colors, but also and above all question the notions of symbolism, know-how, transparency, material rendering …

A game of investigation and observation that makes the visitor slalom around creations by Ettore Sotsass, among others, of Konstantin Grcic, the Bouroullec brothers, Patricia Urquiiola from Studio Maarten, Nendo, Truly Truly… Just exciting!

Nathalie Degardin

Colors, etc . »Until November 14, 2021, Tripostal, Lille
To see also nearby « Young Colors », Exhibition bringing together young artists who have recently graduated, until July 4, Institut pour la photographie et Eglise Sainte-Marie-Madeleine, Lille

Liz West - Remain in Light - 2021 © Maxime Dufour photographies
Penique Productions - Ballon Jaune - 2021 © Maxime Dufour photographies
Thomas Trum - Looping Line - 2021 © Maxime Dufour photographies
Hella Jongerius - Colorful Black Installation - 2017-2020 © Maxime Dufour photographies
Fernando Laposse Totomoxtle © Maxime Dufour photographies
Pigment Walk © Maxime Dufour photographies