La dépense

Alys, Francis
Publisher: Sternberg Press
Binding: Soft cover
Language: English
Pages: 160
Measurements: 14.00 x 21.00 cm

The catalogue for Francis Alÿs’s first large-scale solo museum exhibition in China at the Rockbund Art Museum provides an insightful and critical look into Alÿs’s practices. With his acute poetic and imaginative powers of perception, Alÿs raises questions about anthropology and geopolitics, creating works from his close observations of everyday life. The exhibition’s title, “La dépense,” which translates to “consumption,” references French philosopher Georges Bataille’s writings on the general economy and the “paradox of utility.” As Yuko Hasegawa notes: “In a China transformed by a fast-paced transition to capitalism and the efficiencies of technology, excessively ‘non-productive consumption’ (dépense improductive) is just as important in human activity as productive consumption.” La dépense presents close to 1300 works, including drafts, videos, sketches, paintings, drawings, and other preparatory works.