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Floryan Varennes

From Tuesday 1 September to Monday 30 November 2020

Against the current of contemporary materialism, Floryan Varennes works with the body, its representations and extensions, without showing it, sensitive to what constitutes it without incarnating it. The body as a phenomenon appears in his work as a symbolic conglomerate whose complexity makes it extraordinarily plastic. To better unleash his metamorphic potential, he shapes sculptures, installations and hybrid objects that subvert reference systems, whether it is clothing conventions, gender identities, social authorities or medical standards. His act of deconstruction thus consists in twisting history, thwarting the processes of identification and reinterpreting the archetypes to question this body-surface here dug, dissected, deployed from its voids which paradoxically reinforce its presence. Minimalist in their compositions, clinical in their presentations, his works base their formal refinement on a solid conceptual foundation. Its medievalist positioning corresponds to the need to reactivate the imagination of an idealized body that is missing from the contemporary collective unconscious. Rather than seeing it as a counter-model to modernity, Floryan Varennes reevaluates the thinking of the Middle Ages and, through it, the debt that our times have incurred towards it. The study of manuscripts, tapestries, sculptures, bas-reliefs and paintings of the Middle Ages thus very quickly led him to reconsider the idea of a unanimous condemnation of carnal life. With the notion of adornment, Floryan Varennes finds a conceptual field where the languages of three places of representation converge: the social, the martial and the medical. Sharing their etymology, the "adornment", an expression of social role-playing, here refers to the military "parade", a means of displaying power attributes, as well as to the therapeutic "apparatus", or all the medical devices that assist and extend the body. By synthesizing the means of adorning the body, Floryan Varennes revises their imaginations and questions them in a new light. The blurring between these three semantic categories, which are a priori not very conducive to comparison (society, war, medicine), allows Floryan Varennes to make extremely significant connections, raising very concrete questions, particularly about the idea of care as a wartime act. The vast undertaking of heraldic reform carried out by Floryan Varennes ultimately led to the development of a singular system of signs, acting as an infinite hermeneutic supply.The body, which literally shines by its absence, finds here in these settings the plastic minimum by which it can reveal itself. At the articulation between transhistoricity, transidentity and transfixion, his work operates with sagacious formal and conceptual transitions to better adorn the imaginary of the body with the attributes of the spirit. 

Florian Gaité


The artist residency programme is organised by the CAC - la synagogue de Delme in collaboration with the Lorraine Regional Natural Park and the village of Lindre-Basse.



Born in 1988 in La Rochelle, lives and works between Toulon and Paris. With a double curriculum as a visual artist and historian, he is an alumnus of the Toulon School of Art
(graduated of a DNSEP in 2014) and of Universite Paris X (with a Master's degree in Medieval History in 2020). He starts a PhD in Art and Art Science at the Royal Academy of
Fine Arts of Brussels / Universite Libre de Bruxelles in September 2020.
Since 2015, he has participated in several group exhibitions in France and Europe such as
the Salon de Montrouge, the Biennale des Jeunes Createurs d’Europe et de la Mediterranee in Milan, the Voyage a Nantes, the Printemps de l'art contemporain de Marseille, the Arts Éphemères, Afac, etc. He is also the winner of the Elstir Prize for Contemporary Art. In addition, he has completed several residencies including Pollen at Montfanquin, at the
Centre Hospitalier de Chambery, Afac at the Museum of Leather Crafts in Graulhet and at the International Centre for Glass Art in Meisenthal. In various personal exhibitions, he
shows his work and research: Alter-Heraut at the Istres's Art Center, Ultra-Lesion at the Toulon Museum Gallery, Hard-Care at the Gallery of the Hospital Center of Chambery, and
Amor Armada at the Graulhet Museum of Leather Crafts. In 2017, he joins the Espace Cerveau Research Laboratory at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Villeurbanne. He gives
several conferences and workshops on his research felds and then, his plastic work has been published in several magazines including Artpress, Kuba Paris, Le quotidien de l'art, AQNB, Numero Art, Daily Lazy, Figure Figure, Liberation, Point Contemporain, ArtHeboMedias, Art Sacre, etc.