Embarking on movement

The attitudes we adopt when confronted by movement vary. On the one hand, we cannot fail to notice a movement; yet we may choose to ignore it. We can also elect to let ourselves be carried by motion, and wait until, to our relief, it stops. Physics encompasses several types of motion—Brownian mechanical, or reactive motion, heat motion, or invariable motion. All these types of motion can be transposed in, and applied to, art. En fait, dans son expression classique, l’art visuel est statique et c’est l’imagination du spectateur qui y génère le mouvement.

Maurice Merleau-Ponty in L’œil et l’esprit, refers to the way in which science manipulates things and how easily influenced it is to intellectual modes. Henri Bergson studied an interesting new form of metaphysics, taking the view that the Cartesian separation between res extensae and res intensae is not perceptive enough, and that it prevents one from grasping the dynamics of matter and movement. Merleau-Ponty explains about Visual art: painting, being essence and existence, imaginary and real, visible and the invisible, blurs all our categories by deploying its dreamlike universe of carnal essences, of effective resemblances, of mute meanings.

In the Entry into Motion international exhibition, three Latvian artists Ansis Rozentāls, Reinis Bērziņš and Jānis Noviks, together with French artist Silvère Jarrosson, invite the public, through visual means of expression, to enter into movement. It is our spirit that animates this movement—whether constant or not—whenever we visualise things, directly or indirectly. The works the artists created for this exhibition aim to involve the public in this movement. The zootrope, for instance, usually a mobile object, is presented as something static: only the viewer can give it mobility. Regardless of the spectator/artwork interaction, the painting itself generates the directions of its movement. On the other hand, water and air, in their metaphysical expressions, are self-reliant. On the other hand, it is possible to become aware of the discharging and of the destruction of a sound and a form in a given space, thanks to a kinetic movement, simultaneously creating a retrospective narrative. Visual observation of variable physical categories is possible through the perception of sounds in the environment, which itself takes the form of a movement following this visualization.

Consequently, the entry into motion is built and deconstructed, in the proper sense, with the help of art, and so the meaning of the artworks can be manipulated, revealing their concept and their structure. This, however, does not allow spectators to fully know their artistic essence, but only to become part of the movement in these artworks. While the latter is perceived by our vision, it is via our brains and minds that we can understand it. This perception allows us to realise that any theory about visual art and its expression is metaphysical.