Laure Prouvost: Deep See Blue Surrounding You / Vois Ce Bleu Profond Te Fondre

On view from 14 November 2021 until 15 May 2022

Opening: in the presence of the artist, Sunday 14 November – start 3 pm with opening performance, free entrance on presentation of a valid corona pass.

On 14 November, a magical solo exhibition by French artist Laure Prouvost (Croix, 1978) will open at the Bonnefanten. Prouvost became world-famous for her mesmerising installations, with which she won the Turner Prize in 2013. Deep See Blue Surrounding You / Vois Ce Bleu Profond Te Fondre is an exhibition that immerses the visitor in a subconscious world where he is invited to go in search of the things that connect us, despite our differences, regardless of our age, language or origin. In addition to the dreamlike nature of the exhibition, her work is also sharply activist; emancipation, globalisation and climate change are important themes in her oeuvre. Expect rooms with partly new, never-before-seen works and immersive installations, in which she brings together various art forms, such as blown glass, woven carpets, epoxy and video, in her search for an ideal 'elsewhere'.

Deep See Blue Surrounding You / Vois Ce Bleu Profond Te Fondre

The exhibition started as a presentation at the Venice Biennale (2019) and has since travelled from the blue laguna of Venice to the idyllic landscapes of France and now sets along picturesque banks of the Meuse in Bonnefanten. At the heart of the exhibition is Prouvost’ fictional short film They Parlaient Idéale. They Parlaient Idéale plays with three main themes that also form the basis in Deep See Blue Surrounding You / Vois Ce Bleu Profond Te Fondre. The first is 'generations and identities'. What connects us or what separates us: the oldest from the youngest, the neighbour from the stranger? Secondly, notions of 'disconnection', 'misunderstanding' and 'contradiction' are explored through an exploration of language and its appropriation or misappropriation. Finally, there is the notion of 'utopia and surrealism', which recurs in the form of a escapist journey, both tangible and imaginary.

Prouvost focuses particularly on language, wordplay and translation. Her work is often about miscommunication, as it spins around language in its broadest sense, scrambleing linear narratives and expected associations of words, images and meanings. The exhibition therefore resonates with the notion of 'liquid modernity', coined by Polish sociologist Zygmunt Bauman (Poznan, 1925-Leeds, 2017) to define a postmodern world governed by constant change. Social constructs (such as identity) no longer have enough time to establish themselves and no longer work as a frame of reference for human action and long-term life plans. This causes individuals to face a series of challenges they have never encountered before.

Laure Prouvost - Bonnefanten

Laure Prouvost received, among others, the Max Mara Art Prize for Women (2011) and was awarded the prestigious Turner Prize in 2013. Important solo exhibitions include: AM-BIG-YOU-US LEGSICON at MUHKA, Antwerp (2019); Ring, Sing and Drink for Trespassing at Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2018); Red Brick Art Museum, Beijing (2016); Haus Der Kunst, Munich (2015) and New Museum, New York (2014).

Following Prouvost's presentation at the Venice Biennale, Bonnefanten acquired several of her works, namely Cooling System 10 (for Global Warming), WE WILL KEEP COOL and Hard Liquidity (Alexandre). These works were previously shown in the collection exhibition Beating around the bush #6: Scenes from the Anthropocene in the museum.


The exhibition is accompanied by a 272-page publication of the same name, Laure Prouvost, Deep See Blue Surrounding You. Publisher Flammarion/Institut français. Text bilingual French/English, published in 2019. For sale in the Bonnefanten museum shop and online. Price €45. ISBN: 9782081485501.


Note for press: for more information and visual material, contact Carina De Becker through or +32 (0)4 73 19 10 61

Header image: Laure Prouvost, film still, HD video, 2019. Courtesy of the artist, Galerie Nathalie Obadia (Paris - Brussels), Galerie carlier | gebauer (Berlin) & Lisson Gallery (London - New York)