The Weeping Stones

The Weeping Stones
Credit: Asaf Brenner

The Weeping Stones

Stéphane Thidet

 

“Plan(e)t” concludes with a work by the French artist Stéphane Thidet, The Weeping Stones . The giant boulders hanging in the air subvert the familiar laws of gravity, while they mourn a barren land which shows no sign of plant life or greenery. The work acts as a “wonder”: the stones appear to be producing water from within themselves, and their endless dripping generates an experience that is both intriguing and meditative. This work, like other works in the exhibit, will develop and change over the months that it will be on display.

 

Thidet’s soil is composed of powdered clay, a basic sculpting material that has served sculptors for centuries. The dripping water sculpts the clay soil, which alternately cracks and melds together. These cracks correspond to cracks in existing concepts regarding the natural environment, our use of it, and its future survival.

 

Previous works of Thidet also dealt with the use of natural resources and the visible as well as hidden changes they undergo at the hands of human beings, and specifically artists. One example is his work Détournement (2018) which was executed at the Conciergerie Palace on Ile de la Cité in the heart of Paris. In this work, Thidet diverted water from the Seine and caused it to flow through a wooden channel into the historic building. The water’s movement altered the light and acoustics within the venerable Parisian space. At the end of the route, the water flowed back into the Seine, which crosses Paris, such that the "resource" in Thidet’s work returned to the source from which it was taken. In the present work, Thidet again engages with the sound of water and the subtle interplay of light and color that his intervention brings into the gallery space.

 

Thidet’s clear, clean esthetic creates the illusion of a comprehensible world, but as we linger near his works, we discover that they always contain a concealed dimension, vital yet almost invisible. The artworks express Thidet’s questions about the use of resources in ways that are poetic, dream-like, and sometimes even playful. The shaken auras produced by the dripping water embody the passage of time, on the one hand, and its tarrying, on the other. Likewise, the drips signal the suffering in the desiccation process that threatens the earth. 

 

Stéphane Thidet

The Weeping Stones

2019

Site-specific installation, five stones, clay and water

Production: Tzvika Kaplan, Tucan Design Studio Ltd.

Courtesy of the artist

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