Cyprien Gaillard's (b. 1980, Paris) work navigates geographical sites and psychological states, addressing the relationship between architecture and nature, and evolution and erosion. Using a variety of artistic mediums ranging from painting and sculpture to photography, film, and video, Gaillard juxtaposes pictorial beauty and the atmospherically lush with elements of sudden violence, destruction, and idiosyncrasy culled from popular culture, pointing to the precarious nature of public space, social ritual, and the very viability of the notion of civilization.
The artist's first solo exhibition in New York is comprised of over 80 works, including five major cinematic works and two site-specific works made in New York on the occasion of his MoMA PS1 presentation. In Cities of Gold and Mirrors (2009), shot in Cancun, Mexico, images of Mayan ruins are interspersed with the golf courses, mega-resorts, and tourists that now saturate the area, as incensed adolescents guzzle tequila with the same elated fervor that characterizes a ritualistic dance performed by a gangster on the ruins of El Ray.
P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center Website