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BAPTISTE DEBOMBOURG, on materials & philosophical concepts

Words by Lula Criado



French contemporary artist Baptiste Debombourg blends materials, objects and philosophical concepts to create poetic and thought-provoking pieces of art. Through his work, he denounces, for example, how mass production and consumption have become models of behaviour in industrialised societies. The binomial destruction-construction is inherent to human nature. However, looking through Debombourg’s eyes the boundaries between elements, space, construction and destruction are buried.

Two sculpture installations have caught my attention: Flow and Stalker – a collaboration with visionary Martin Margiela during Art Basel Miami 2013. Flow is a cathartic masterpiece in which Baptiste Debombourg uses hundreds of windscreens to create a tide that floods the space much like a tsunami. It is a metaphor of the binomial destruction-construction, a piece of art that explains how capitalism and consumerism have invaded and destroyed society and killed human beings.

On the other hand; Stalker is a commercial work, a collaboration with Martin Margiela that does not lose the essence of the work Debombourg. It was made to celebrate the new jewellery collection Crystalactite and consists of cascaded laminated glass covering furniture and garments at MMM boutique in Miami.

volte face


What is more important: to take or not to take yourself too seriously in order to be creative?

It’s a balance. For sure we need to be concentrated if we would like the best result… to be serious of course  I’m always very serious about a joke or a drama… in my point of view, the question, if to be creative, is to be able to overcome his ego.

What’s your favourite time of the day?

Exactly the moment when I’m starting to sleep when I’m in bed.

Solitude or loneliness, how do you spend your time alone?

Most of the time I  use my time to learn, discover new cultures, and new universes, and meet new people, and actors in the new culture. I’m every time fascinated to find new ways of expression and new people passionate. 

By the way, I use frequently the term loneliness of the artist. It happens when you are alone in your shit situation of preparation for the show, especially when nobody can help you, technically… and of course the idea… sometimes it’s difficult because everything is inside you, nobody can help you and your decision is very important.

Then I use the term loneliness of the artist… It happens when you are alone in your shit.

Have you found beauty in unexpected places/situations?

Each day I discover new beauty. From my point of view, it’s not a question of place especially but a way to observe, analyse and understand things and their difference. The potential of beauty is everywhere, it depends on you to materialise it.

What do you want to achieve before you die?

One of my dreams will be to open as Vito Acconci my personal architecture studio… and to start to play!

One for the road… What are you unafraid of?

I’m scared of racism.

(All photos courtesy the artist. Photo 1, Stalker; photo 2, Flow; photo 3, Volte face; photo4, Apollo; photo 5, Inception)
On Key

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