Nicolas BourriaudCurator of CRASH TEST, February 2018
Jeanne Briand's work is no more anthropomorphic, zoomorphic, or even organic, than it belongs to the world of machines. The works operate within all these categories and contribute to constructing a new one, in which prosthetics and devices, biology and mechanics cease to be perceived as opposites. This biological realism, which emerges today in the wake of a global awareness of the anthropocene, represents a crucial tendency in today's art scene.
Jeanne Briand, whose work I first encountered when she was a student at Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, is one of the artists of this new generation that could be qualified as "materialistic", provided that this concept is defined as one of an open-mind: neither scientistic nor limited to any aspect of living matter, Jeanne Briand contributes to shifting the parameters of nature and culture, as well as those of 'reality'. […]
Les oeuvres de Jeanne Briand ne sont ni anthropomorphes, ni zoomorphes, ni même organiques, pas plus qu’elles n’appartiennent au monde des machines. Elles participent de l’ensemble de ces catégories et contribuent à en créer une nouvelle, dans laquelle prothèses et appareils, biologie et mécanique cesseraient d’être perçus contradictoirement. Ce réalisme biologique, qui émerge aujourd’hui dans le sillage de cette prise de conscience planétaire que constitue l’anthropocène, représente une tendance cruciale de l’art de notre époque. Jeanne Briand, dont j’ai connu le travail à l’école des Beaux-Arts de Paris, est l’une des artistes de cette nouvelle génération que l’on pourrait qualifier de matérialiste, à condition de définir cette notion comme un état d’esprit ouvert : ni scientiste, ni limitée à un quelconque versant de la matière vivante, Jeanne Briand contribue à déplacer les paramètres de la nature et de la culture, tout autant que ceux de la ‘réalité’. […]
Anna Labouze & Keimis Henni
Curators of Futures of Love, July 2019
At the start of Jeanne Briand’s work, there is the late discovery of being born, alongside her twin brother, in vitro. She belongs to the first generation of children conceived by in vitro fertilization. This biographical element will soon become a medium – the glass from the test tubes – and a research guide: the origin of forms. Her sculptures, sometimes wearing a harness or covered in skin (natural leather), convey a fetishist tone to this prosthetics “used for body augmentation”. Her artistic universe, filled with gametes, chromosomes, test tubes, uterus and now jellyfishes, fall within a new sensitivity, deeply non-binary, not only concerning gender, but also the subject/the object, the human/the animal, the organic/the technologic.
“Jellyfish, this ancestral organism, can reproduce at an embryonic state and hack! They swarm, and represent one of the most massive planetary colonization, even coercing human activity: ironically, its spreading is the result of global warming”.
The immersive installation Fluid(s) of a Love Scene: Jelly Parade is made of blown glass phosphorescent jellyfishes. Their reproduction modes, sexual and asexual at the same time, fascinate the artist. Either females capture male spermatozoids and the reproduction takes place in their stomach, or the gametes (male and female) that were previously spit in the water, meet with the stream to then transform into eggs and larvae, finally giving birth to new jellyfishes, without fertilization.
More than a metaphor of the new reproduction means & sexual habits, the artist gives life to her sculptures through an audio installation that reminds us of the atmosphere of the backroom of a debauchery club, and by creating light fluctuations, making her sculptures dialogue, thanks to the smooth and hypnotic movement of a video, where other jellyfishes navigates in a fish tank. The whole work of art gives birth to a sensual and futuristic courtship ritual, a bewitching & enlightened aquatic dance.
Gallerist, January 2018
Jeanne Briand (b.1990) is a french artist living in Paris. She holds an MFA (dnsap with jury’s honors) from Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris and she studied at Cal'Arts.
Interweaving materials, molecules and affects, Jeanne Briand’s practice looks into progress in science and in genetic in particular as a medium. She questions our specificities as well as our relationship with others through the fundamental organic structure that is our DNA. Her hybrid works made of mechanical parts, glass or leather stand at the crossroad of scientific discoveries and artefacts, while her Gamete Glass sculptures exist as an opera of genetic glass generating sounds enabled by the very own breath that created them.
Jeanne Briand’s work has been exhibited around the world including places such as Sunset RunSpace, Los Angeles ; Clark House, Bombay ; La Panacée Arts Center, Montpellier ; South Dublin Arts Center, Dublin ; Lūznava Manor Rēzeknes Arts Center, Rezekne, Latvia ; Fondation Hyppocrène, Paris ; Centro Culturale Textura, Bogotà ; California Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles …
She received several awards and grants, including Production grants ADAGP / Salon de Montrouge ; PalaisInsta Residency, Palais de Tokyo ; Laureate of Palais des Beaux-Arts de Paris – New Technology Prize ; Laureate of Aurige – Amis des Beaux-Arts de Paris Prize ; Scholarship Ensba with California Institute of the Arts…
Pedro Moraisfrom Quotidien de l'Art N° 1592, Fall 2018
Le corps augmenté
Le Manifeste du xénoféminisme, publié en 2015, prônait un usage transformé des technologies pour combattre les déterminismes biologiques associés au corps. « La glorification de la nature n’a rien à nous offrir, nous voulons voir se multiplier les différences entre les sexes », déclarait l’auteur-collectif Laboria Cuboniks.
Jeanne Briand semble inscrire son travail dans une sensibilité nouvelle, profondément anti-binaire, ne concernant pas seulement le genre, mais aussi le sujet / l’objet, l’humain / l’animal, l’organique / le technologique. Appartenant à la première génération née par fécondation in vitro, elle a participé, avec un « opéra de gamètes », à l’exposition-manifeste « Crash Test » de Nicolas Bourriaud autour de matériaux composites, refusant l’opposition nature/culture. Parfois ses sculptures sont parées de harnais ou recouvertes de peau (du cuir naturel) donnant un caractère fétichiste à ces prothèses « utilisées pour l’augmentation du corps ».
Ailleurs, elle emprunte au langage animal pour transformer des sculptures luminescentes en « prothèses auditives » pour méduses. « Cet organisme se décuple à l’état embryonnaire et fait du hacking : sa prolifération résulte paradoxalement du réchauffement climatique », dit-elle. « Pour moi des auteurs comme Aldous Huxley n’écrivent pas des dystopies, mais de la philo, cela peut être excitant ou anxiogène, mais le futur est déjà là. ».
Ingrid Luquet-Gadfrom Revue02 Fall-Winter 2017-18
The contemporary body is neither an organism nor a machine: it’s a techno-body
In its earlier prefigurations, nomadism appeared essentially as a revolt against private property and the invasion of consumer society’s standardized items. Right now, a new meaning of the term is coming to the fore: the millennium just beginning has certainly marked humanity’s awakening to its nomadic condition—the whole of humanity and not just the artist. But this particular nomadism is no longer linked to the habitat, it is even its contradiction. It has become a biological datum and connects with the most common motif of augmented humanity—a term that is, incidentally, inexact, because it is more a question of synthesis than addition, linking up with the “production of affects”—biopolitical affects—referred to by Toni Negri and Michael Hardt. For the Paul B. Preciado who, in 2008, wrote Testo Junkie, under the name of Beatriz Preciado, the modern body cannot henceforth be “reduced to a pre-discursive organism”, and life “does not exist outside the interlacing of production and culture that belong to technoscience”. Whence his conclusion, based on the earlier works of Donna Haraway: “This body is a technoevolving, multiconnected entity incorporating technology. Neither an organism nor a machine: technobody”. The contemporary body is literally ‘born ready’: ready to drift.
These interweaves between theories, materials, molecules and affects are incarnated in the work of Jeanne Briand in the form of plugs and prostheses which create their own life. Embarked on during her degree at the Paris School of Fine Arts, the Random Control (2010-2015) series is made up of blown glass uteri manufactured from laboratory test tubes. The series then developed towards Gamete Glass (2015-2017), where forms likewise reminiscent of an arti cial life produce sounds when they are activated by the breath that gave birth to them. In becoming more and more autonomous, these glass matrices were displayed augmented by plugs and supported by steel bars at the Salon de Montrouge in that same year. In attaining an exchange with other environments and verticality, the works in the series G.G.Opal Schwartz (2017) thus appear like the Objets Cache-Toi of the world after the disappearance of the human factor.
But it is undoubtedly in the latest developments of her work that we can see in its most readable form the appropriation of the theme of biological nomadism by young artists who have begun producing during this decade. In a month-long residency at the Clark House Initiative in Bombay, last summer, the artist observed the guards wrapping the bodies of motorbikes being driven around the over-populated city. As both a protective device for the bike and a device for keeping pedestrians at bay, these external metal structures are, in addition, made to measure and customized. In covering them with skin, the artist hijacked them and turned them, in her own words, into “ nery and prostheses”, and started a new series, Proximity Max, which she is currently involved with in Los Angeles. Set on a wall or on the ground, the originally augmented body has ended up disappearing altogether, elevating the prop to the rank of substance.