A master in the art of circumvention, drawing inspiration from the idiosyncratic work of the "Royal de Luxe" street art company or Pierrick Sorin, Stéphane Masson has been spreading his offbeat humour in our lacklustre daily lives since 2004. The video artist signed his first project for the Festival of Lights in 2010 with the memorable Bisou. Since then, this inventive troublemaker has been an ambassador for the Festival of Lights and has ferried his weird installations from Brussels to Dubai and from Bucharest to Singapore. His projects in public areas, which the Toulouse artist sees as "poetic attacks", always feature something unexpected that appeals to people and makes them smile. In 2018, his work has travelled from La Part Dieu shopping centre to The Village in Villefontaine.
The Part Dieu shopping centre is bustling when something strange suddenly happens. At 5 p.m. the two glass elevators next to the fountain are taken over by an oinking pig, a chewing goat, a splashing penguin, a proud lion, a confused hen and a lost tortoise making quite a racket. Stéphane Masson uses the photos he has taken in zoos, farms and pet shops to inject a note of animal magic into our everyday lives. The artist uses video projections to turn these small spaces into a curious menagerie where shoppers are more than welcome.
Dans mon bocal (In my jar) is a triptych made up of three video installations which explore the notion of containers and content. At the top, a building dominating the village seems to fill with water, like a giant fish tank in which a huge fish is struggling to swim. Big Aquarium gives the illusion of emptying and filling again ready for a shoal of scarlet fish. Further away, in the middle of the village, the Aquarium car is given the same treatment, but this time it is teeming with goldfish. Lastly, Cube Etrange exhibits a collection of Kilner jars which contain projections of animals, dancers, whirling women, fireworks, people making faces or blowing kisses. All these tiny microcosms are preserved for virtual eternity. A video system allows the public to capture their own image in a jar for a few seconds.
Have your photo taken in front of the 4th arrondissement City Hall and become one of the many characters who participate in bringing this large light cube to life. It is studded with 400 silhouettes of men and women, each of which is enclosed in a jar.
After nightfall, strange travellers take place in the lifts of several metro stations. A giraffe, an elephant and a penguin will appear in the metro lifts this year… Lift users are welcomed by pictures and sound effect.
Played again at :
Nuits Blanches de Bruxelles 2013
La Novela de Toulouse 2013
Festival Lausanne Lumières 2013
Stéphane Masson decides, for the Fête des Lumières 2011, to transform the mythique Fiat 500 into an aquarium. What a funny idea! This contemplative video installation, in stark contrast, brings a touch of poetry and magic to our everyday environment. In 2012, Stéphane Masson will take over the lifts of several metro stations.
Played again at:
Night Festival Singapour 2012
Festival La Novella 2013, Toulouse
Dubaï festival of lights 2014
When asked to blow a kiss on camera, local residents were keen to enter into the spirit of things. This harvest of love led to the video “Bon baisers de Lyon” (Love from Lyon), which was played in a loop on street lamps and through the windows of buildings on the square. As well as these extra large kisses blown at passers-by, the lights from the lampposts offer their embrace. This surreal distribution of big-hearted images in an incongruous setting brings a real poetic boost to everyday city life.
Played again at:
Fête du jardin 2012, Toulouse
Sapi Festival à Saint Jans Cappel 2012, Bailleul
Expos vagabondes de Salvagnac 2012
Alliance française de Turin 2012