Camille Henrot

(France) b.1978

Lives and works in Paris and New York

Best-known for her videos and animated films combining drawn art, music and occasionally scratched or reworked cinematic images, Camille Henrot’s work blurs the traditionally hierarchical categories of art history. In her work, Camille Henrot analyzes systems of visual information and typologies of objects from a wide array of historical moments. She has produced a number of visual essays in which she follows intuitive research pursuits across disciplines and finds a variety of aesthetic and morphological links between disparate systems of knowledge. 

Her massage sculptures are designed according to the principle of anthropomorphism. In Vivre ensemble, Roland Barthes proposes the idea that the image of human civilization is embodied in the geometric form of the rectangle. The artist made some rectangular earth blocks, and asked practitioners of fasciatherapy, shiatsu or plantar reflexology to massage them. Each piece is named after its therapist and corresponds to some symptoms given by the artist as a starting point. 

The work integrates modeling and pain therapy, and evokes “a fold of trace and of the erasure of trace.” While applying traditional massage techniques to the sculpture-object, the work intimates a correspondence between the role of the artist and that of the traditional shaman, who, failing to effect a cure, may at least move the pain away. 

In 2010 Henrot was nominated for the Prix Marcel Duchamp. In 2013 she was the recipient of the Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship in Washington DC, where she produced the video Grosse Fatigue, which won the Silver Lion at the 55th Venice Biennale. This year she has solo exhibitions at the New Museum as well as Sculpture Center in New York, the Schinkel Pavillon in Berlin, Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Denmark, and Tate Modern in London. She is also nominated for the 2014 Hugo Boss Prize. 

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