in 1956, Bucharest, Roumania.
Graduated from ENSBA’, Paris, 1979
first word of the Bible is “Bereshit”, today generally translated
in English as “In the beginning”.
The book of
Genesis relates the symbolic, primordial history of the creation of the
world, drawn from legends that date from time immemorial, from before
linear chronology even. Without wishing to start a theological discussion,
I find it fascinating to analyse this word. The translation of
“Bereshit” that I like best in French is “En tête”,
because it means both “at the head, or front, of something” and “in the
mind”, just as, in the Middle East’s view of the physical creation of the
world as the result of a conceptual process, the universe was dreamed up
on the first day in the mind of the Creator. What language did He think
in? What can this cerebral space containing the whole of future creation
have possibly been like?
is the starting point of the sculptures I have called “En tête”.
They are multi-facetted structures or constructions – as it were, the
primordial egg or seed – capable of containing all forms of life to come.
Their skeletons are at once geometrical and animal, an architecture of the
of my pieces varies widely, and yet they are all more or less linked to
each other by this theme. They are an attempt to create forms that are
themselves inhabited, that are veritable sources of energy, that give the
impression of being able to breathe by themselves; an attempt also to
suggest a Nature or environment that is at once in accord and in conflict
with human creation. They seek to evoke a sentiment, a sonority, a
privileged environment, the natural or artificial erosion caused by Nature
and by mankind
I often use
the earth itself to find my bearings - I mean the surface or ground
zero that we touch with our feet while our bodies reach for the skies.
Like the mathematical representation of a curve, the memory of the past is
at the bottom, time present on the surface, and hope or the future at the
too, I use several pieces to create an ensemble, a journey through
time with points and with a space which is “in between”. A story, a
comic strip telling of the birth of a form in stages. A negative form, a
hole beneath the surface of the Earth’s crust, a space devoid of its
matter that forms a receptacle, like an archeological site. And then,
stage by stage, a form that emerges at times like a mountain driven
upwards by tectonic forces, at others like a kind of geometrical
architecture created my man. History is a story that has to be read over
time, and that time may be linear or it may be circular.
are vehicle-forms between stages.
forms, “Arènes”, are like city centres; they embody the idea of the
centre of the universe, the navel, a space created, ordered, surrounded by
walls raised against the outside world, the sphere of the unknown, the
foreign. Yet this fortress is not entirely enclosed, its walls are in the
shape of a spiral, whose ends barely touch so as to leave just enough
space for a narrow passage between what is outside and what is inside, as
though it were a place of refuge.
is the most obvious architectural construction, a series of structures in
three stages, a personal temple for the ascension of the mind. It is a
reflection of my search for the concept of a spiritually inhabited form.
If the shape
of my sculptures is often loaded down with detail, it is because I believe
that simplicity can sometimes hide, or prevent one from seeing, the
underlying reality. Doing away with detail in order better to understand,
instead of trying to apprehend the whole in all its complexity, can be a
mistake, for it is all too often the details themselves that create the
The words of
my language are stone, metal, clay, the so-called traditional materials.
What is most important for me is the process itself and the outcome,
rather than the choice of material. Besides, the purpose of language is as
much to define - and to define oneself - as it is to communicate with
As one who
has changed his language more than once in his life, I find that the idiom
that suits me best is that of form, of volume, of texture, nuance and
explain the meaning, the direction, the mechanism behind one’s creation
can be a dangerous undertaking. It can reveal or demystify the process
that underlies the creation of a work of art (for oneself as well as for
others). It can make any further attempt to create or even look at art
seem ridiculous, pointless.
I am often
tempted to say to people: “My work is right in front of you. Just look at
it for yourselves!” There is no need for explanation, and even less for a
key. Better by far that I simply try to open doors, suggesting possible
ways to apprehend the pieces on display.
Ariel Moscovici 2008
Arranged and translated by
Jacques Carrio and Robert Drew