The exhibition brings together thirteen works from Noël Dolla’s latest Sniper series, created between 2020 and 2021 at the 109, a centre for contemporary art in Nice. In this new and vast studio, Dolla inaugurated a practice that allows him to work on very large formats, including canvases that are ten metres long.
His studio – a former slaughterhouse – is equipped with girders and block and tackle pulley systems that Dolla uses to be lifted in the air on a plastic stretcher. As he lies on it, he slides over the canvas installed on the ground, wrestling with the painting without touching nor seeing it.
A bottle of black acrylic in his hand, he first squeezes the paint onto the surface and traces a black line that structures the space of the composition. Sliding over the work a second time, he then applies different colours on the canvas, his body still uncomfortably hanging in the air and moved across the studio like a camera used for a tracking shot. His last move is a destructive one as he fires with an air gun on the patches of colored paint that burst through the white surface, bringing to mind the terrible image of a body hit by a bullet.
Appealing and terrifying « Flowers of evil » bloom all along the canvas. At first sight, they are charming but quickly take on a tragic aspect when one realises that they are all about war, death and torn shreds of flesh.