Born in 1986, Olivier Jonvaux is a graduate of ENSBA - École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts de Lyon and Le Fresnoy - Studio national des arts contemporains. He has been invited to various residencies and art institutions in France and abroad. His work explores the life of objects, from their creation to their destruction, through a multiplicity of media: the use of clay, cement or modeling clay is complemented by an immaterial dimension through the use of digital techniques. In his installations, sculptures and videos, the reiteration of forms taken from the everyday escapes their origin and attribution, playing with the status of the work through a sought-after poetic determination. Through her works, whether real or virtual, the artist questions our relationship with the world through a resolutely laconic reflection on its fetishization, its supposed stability and its modes of circulation.

Residency 2023

Inaugurating the resumption of residences aboard the Maison Flottante du cneai =, Olivier Jonvaux will be settling in Poses, Normandy in September 2023. Arriving at the height of the village’s nautical season, the boat is surrounded by pleasure boats, fishermen, swimmers, water skiers and other leisure activities.

During his residency, the artist appropriated the model-building technique. He built a 1:10 scale Queen model boat from the 60s, which he customized to current marine standards (paint, accessories). The interior of the boat is fitted out with various decorative objects and interior supplies. These objects are among the iconic models designed by the Bouroullec brothers, the designers behind Maison Flottante. These include Nesting Table (2017), Alcove Plume (2013), Vegetal chair (2018) and L’oiseau (2011). Based on photogrammetries, these digital models were scaled to the scale of the boat, printed in PLA and arranged in the manner of a fictional interior.

The “Floating Twin”, a title that establishes the twinship with the Maison Flottante and the designers of the original boat, attempts to extend the history of this “Floating House”. The public is invited to pilot the boat from the shore, taking part in this leisure activity as a continuation of the invitation given in return by these designers. Portrayed by Isabella Hin thanks to the support of ADAGP, the artist is photographed with the boat’s key around his arm, like the skipper of this dream boat.

Associated artist

On the occasion of “Wake up/Optimism & Resilience Part. 1 - The Infinity Of Grapes” in 2023, Olivier Jonvaux has been invited as associate artist to conceive and reflect on the modes of presentation and selection of the works in the exhibition. Through the observation of nature and the phenomena that make it up, from macroscopic to microscopic scales, the works presented attempt to compose a range of aesthetic, political and societal possibilities in the face of current ecological and identity-related issues. A necessary parenthesis, an awakening, through forms as elementary as they are fundamental, notably through Stéphanie Roland’s film Podesta Island and Charlemagne Palestine’s video Island Song, Guillaume Aubry’s in situ installation Set Suns and Fanny Giquel’s The Little Lost Planets, as well as other works from the cneai = collection and Thelma Yang’s contribution.

The infinity of bunches evoked by the exhibition title is taken from Olivier Jonvaux’s film Pirovano. The film features a bunch of grapes on an outdoor table, the central element defining the film’s circular, repetitive form. Entirely realized in 3D modeling, the grape, already present in the history of art and mimesis, becomes here an allegory of atomic matter. Enveloped by the looped sound of the film (a reed flute playing an 18th-century rondeau), the exhibition inaugurated at the Cité internationale universitaire de Paris is intended as the continuation of an artistic line focused on the societal issues to which the cneai = is committed in its new programming.