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Daily Helping for July 19th, 2021 – Tarek Atoui – The Ground

A photo of artwork The Ground by Tarek Atoui. The photo is of various instruments, plates, and sound systems on a raised platform.

My quest to enjoy the now open museums of France continues! After the Louvre, a visit to the Bourse du Commerce, a brand new gallery in Paris, was next. I should clarify. The building dates back to 1763, but it wasn’t until recently that it opened as a gallery for contemporary art. At the moment, the Bourse du Commerce is leased to French billionaire Fran├žois Pinault, and in May, it opened to the public with an inaugural exhibition pulled from Pinault’s personal art collection. This exhibition quickly became the talk of the town, so naturally, I had to visit.

I wouldn’t say that I was completely enamoured with all of the art on display. Some of it was very… contemporary. However, in the basement, there were two art installations on display that were simply incredible. Today’s helping is one of those; The Ground by Tarek Atoui. Unfortunately for those of you reading this, I have absolutely no idea how to describe it. Even the picture above doesn’t do it justice. It was simultaneously both a visual and aural work of art, with various sounds being created by vibrations and gravity.

See? I told you I had no idea how to describe this piece. I’m not sure if it’s even something that can be described. But I will say this. It was incredible. It was exactly the type of artwork that I’ve been missing all these long months of closures and lockdowns. Something indescribable that you have to experience in person and not through a screen. Honestly, I could have spent hours listening to the soundscape that Tarek Atoui has created. Unfortunately, I didn’t have hours that day, but the time that I did have was magical.

Suggestions for artists I should check out? Please contact me with your ideas. I hope you enjoyed your daily helping of art!