Pauline Curnier Jardin (*1980) presents in an immersive site-specific installation in the Salle Poma a showing of the video work Bled Out (2019). This film is a free adaptation of the short film Un Chant d’Amour [A Love Song] (1950) by Jean Genet with the following plot: in a prison, isolated inmates communicate their mutual desires from one cell to another under the eye of a guard who is half accomplice and half torturer.
Both a «weapon of liberation and a poem of love» as Genet described it, its explicit depiction of homosexual desire led to the film being censored for 25 years. Curnier Jardin adopts the narrative structure, but replaces the young men with menopausal women celebrating their erotic power. She adds a prologue that is supposed to justify the inprisonment of these women. Strongly impregnated with feminist demands, and with a great deal of humour, Bled Out can evoke at once a fantastic detective film, a TV series or experimental cinema. This porosity between different registers is a constant in the French artist’s work. The framing of the film projection can accordingly be set in romantic painting as well as in children’s theatre. The installation featuring the film was awarded the prestigious Preis der Nationalgalerie, Germany’s highest artistic distinction, in 2019. It is presented here in a new configuration.
Photos by Lea Kunz