Floriane de Lassée: How Much Can You Carry? September 11 — October 31, 2015
FLORIANE DE LASSÉE DEBUTS AT CATHERINE EDELMAN GALLERY IN HER FIRST SOLO SHOW IN THE UNITED STATES
From the roads of Ethiopia to the Himalayan Mountain passes, drivers race past men, women and children carrying heavy loads atop their heads, often staring, waving or simply avoiding them. In 2012, Floriane de Lassée decided to stop her car on a roadside in Ethiopia, and speak with the carriers whose lives were spent walking from place to place. How Much Can You Carry? is an ongoing project about the personal and familial burdens one carries on a daily basis.
Working in Rwanda, Nepal, Indonesia, Bolivia, Ethiopia, Japan and other countries, de Lassée asked people to talk about what mattered most to them. And in these remote communities, what mattered most was often objects of necessity or survival: sacks of grains for the farmer, bales of straw to be traded for a cooking pan, or empty bottles to be recycled. The participants show a surprising sense of curiosity, fun, and pride, while bearing a life of consumption, ritual, or needs on their heads.
In Aru, Ethiopia, we see a young girl balancing a goat atop a stack of wood. She explains to de Lassée that the goat will soon be bartered for other necessary products, and the wood is used to cook and heat her home; in Bigawa, Nepal, a young man proudly stands with a bunch of hay for his cow, which provides him with milk; in Jean Claude, Rwanda, a barefoot man stands on a car tire in an oversized jacket, with a heap of clothes and scraps atop his head; in SRI, Indonesia, a young girl balances an array of plastic laundry baskets and rubber mats, often used in the home for shelter and storage. Through these images, Floriane de Lassée asks the viewer to contemplate their own reality, and consider what they would carry to symbolize their lives.
Floriane de Lassée was born in Paris, France in 1977, and still resides close to the city. Her work has been featured in numerous one-person and group shows throughout Europe and can be seen in her recent monograph, How Much Can you Carry? (Editions Filigranes, 2014). The exhibition at CEG marks her first solo show in the United States.
There will be an opening reception on Friday, September 11, from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.