UP TO 3,000 LIGHTS
Vernissage & After Party
Thursday October 20
Bruno Brunet’s work explores the materials of public space, society’s fabric, the codes of conduct taught in respect of them and how inevitably they are broken.
Depicting the destruction of public property, Brunet specifically references the plastic bus seat covers of the Brussels public transport. However, Brunet recreates and recontextualises these minute public destructions into a minimalist frame, the white canvas, and brings attention to the nuance of the action that tells the story of a figure lashing out against the banal repetition of modern society. These delicate interventions give life and language, story and character to the plain and overlooked planes of contemporary life.
From the suburbs of Brussels, Brunet often took the earliest trains into the city’s heart as well as the last train out of it. On these trains he often saw young men, teenagers, “tough guys or maybe just bored, lonely guys” vandalizing the train by holding a lighter aflame and melting imprints into the plastic chair covers. Brunet recalls the fumes that would fill the empty cars, but more importantly, the patterns, the “constellations” these outsiders would create. Witnessing these interventions greatly influenced Brunet’s perception of art and who was “allowed” to create it.
From this formative experience, Brunet’s creative identity was developed. By reenacting this public intervention on the white canvas and hanging it on the walls of a respected art establishment Brunet’s positioning as a hybrid artist is clear. While at once part of the chosen few, he performs a rendition of the outcast and the very tool used to create these remembrances is exhibited as well. Recreated as a ghostly trophy and placed on a pedestal, one last lighter is memorialized.
Text by Max Bushman
Bruno Brunet (b.1976) lives and works in Brussels.
Received his MFA at Académie Royale des Beaux Arts de Bruxelles in 2002.
Works for his own writing Instrument brand CLEON since 2008.
Selected solo and group exhibitions:
JLM, La Criée Centre d’Art Contemporain, Rennes, France (2004)
Subway Savages, ALICE gallery, Brussels, Belgium (2005)
Dehors! Le graffiti à Bruxelles, Musée d’Ixelles, Brussels, Belgium (2011)
YO, Hip Hop Generations a retrospective, Bozar, Brussels, Belgium (2017)
Dalonaz I & Dalonaz II Curated by Brice Guilbert, Royal, Brussels, Belgium (2017)
Hellblau Met, SB34, Brussels, Belgium (2021)