WORKS BY MALYSSE PRESENTED ON THIS WEBSITE
"The Bioperversity Project" - 2010
The Bioperversity Project ("Bioperversidade" in Portuguese) is a group of work by MALYSSE in which the sculptor-photographer performs bio unpleasant gestures on live plants.
"Images et représentations de la folie" - 2001 (French)
Cet article propose une réflexion en images autour d'une expérience d'anthropologie visuelle du corps appliquée au vaste thème de la folie féminine.
MALYSSE is an artist, anthropologist and art critic, born in France in 1971. He lives and works in São Paulo, Brazil and teaches Art and Anthropology at the University of Sao Paulo (EACH/USP).
His artwork questions authenticity, imitation, postcolonial identity, relationships between Nature and Culture. Deeply influenced by the thoughts of Marcel Duchamp, he considers contemporary art as a rite of interaction in which the work is a conceptual trap seeking to manipulate the anthropological and artistic representations of the voyeur. In his Afro-White project, it whitens African tribal art and subverts the Brazilian demographics of skin colors, offering replicas of African sculptures and ceramics in all the colors quoted by local demographic studies. His collection of African masks (passport because they are smaller and represents the tribes) made out of coconut soap subverts racist stereotypes and hint at the Arte Povera movement that seems to be one of its key visual references.
If an artist like Giuseppe Penone works "with" Nature, MALYSSE attacks her... In his Bioperversity Manifesto, he ironically states that he tortures plants because he loves them: "Making Bio-unpleasant gestures on living plants: to torture with malice; to slowly poison; to tie up sadistically; to cut aesthetically; to peel impeccably; to damage effectively; to abuse without guilt; to prevent photosynthesis at all costs... To document with images the natural death of plants and the bio-unpleasant gestures of the artist (to objectively describe the destructive-creative process)."
The central idea of his work on plants is to humanize their suffering by integrating them into local cultural contexts (the hair salon, cosmetic surgery, pollution, religion) to implement a strategy of relational aesthetics which leads the viewer to suffer and to feel a burst of ecological awareness, through identification.
In his project The Anthropologist as Transvestite, he creates appearances that do not correspond to his cultural identity, nor to his gender, nor to is social function ... but in which his "diluted" identity is both visible and hidden. By temporarily entering the skin and clothing of twelve characters of typical ethnographic researches, his intention is to evoke the tradition of ethnographic photography (of the colonial Era, colored by a fear of contagion inherent to the racism of the time, that sets hard boundaries between colonizer and colonized). By showing that a French anthropologist can become an Other ; a Massai, a Tuareg, a Peruvian from Cuzco or an Ashaninka Indian from Brazil; his intention is to approach post-colonialism in an autobiographical way and to highlight the fact that appearances are deeply hybrid cultural productions and thus are always relative.
MALYSSE has been working since 1992 on what he defines as an anthropology of corporal appearances, an interdisciplinary methodology (Anthropology of the Body, Anthropology of Consumption, Anthropology of Gender, Visual Anthropology) that studies the social and cultural logics that are being projected on the body and its visibility, treating the body as true cultural fiction. He managed to integrate a lot of his researches on this theme in his website Opus Corpus, which has won international awards and has been featured in festivals of digital art (FILE in Brazil, NEW FORM is Canada). His artworks were exhibited at many galleries (Parallelo, Epicentro Cultural, D-Concept) and Brazilian institutions (SESC / METROPOLIS / USP / Metro MS), and he is actually represented by Maelle galerie d'art contemporain in Paris, France.