Elmgreen & Dragset got their dates in a muddle this weekend. Or so it seemed.
The duo installed a booth inside Paris’ Grand Palais on Saturday for art fair FIAC – a month before the event actually starts.
Their timing was no accident, however. The booth – conceived for Galerie Perrotin in the exact spot the French dealer will occupy when the fair opens – is actually an artwork itself.
Standing alone inside the Grand Palais’ vast empty nave, the installation is the duo’s latest effort to lampoon the relentless art fair machine.
‘It’s standing there alone; it’s quite vulnerable,’ Michael Elmgreen told The Art Newspaper, adding that it was ‘fantastic’ to see just one curated presentation rather than an overload of exhibits crying ‘buy me, buy me, buy me’.
Hanging on the walls of the booth – up for one day only – were pieces by Galerie Perrotin artists, chosen for their adherence to a colour scheme of black, white and neutral tones.
‘We’ve stripped away the context in which the object is normally displayed, in order to reveal the essence of its character – a sort of distillation process,’ the duo explained to Blouin Artinfo.
Their Grand Palais installation follows on from ‘The Well Fair’, an entire fake art fair they created for Beijing’s UCCA, filled with 88 pieces of their own work.
‘The art fair structure looks more or less like an ordinary trade fair,’ Elmgreen told us back in January. ‘It doesn’t really differ from how you experience a fair for electronics, or tractors.’
Their installation is also the latest decontextualisation piece from the duo, who famously created a Prada store in the midst of the desert in Marfa, Texas.