Julie Béna: Miles
Julie Béna's work is marked by her personal history. She spent her childhood as an actress touring with a traveling theater until her adolescence. Her universe is made up of an eclectic set of references, combining literature, pop culture and art, fun and seriousness, parallel times and spaces. Comprising sculpture, installation, film, and performance, her work often seems to float in an infinite vacuum, unfolding against a fictional backdrop where everything is possible. Over the past years, Béna has created a range of personal cosmologies in which she stages seemingly banal characters and objects that have enigmatic conversations and interactions with each other. From Pantopon Rose, a character taken from William S. Burroughs’ Naked Lunch, to Miss None and Mister Peanut, a disembodied floating wig and the iconic monocled anthropomorphic peanut, Béna lends her characters a singular agency and voice—they are defined by what they are not.
After graduating here in 2007, the artist now returns to Villa Arson in Nice. Miles is a new installation composed of film trilogy Letters from Prague and a set of metal sculptures The Aspirants evoking the universe of the Western genre. The shapes of horses, a dead tree, a cart and false rocks appear as a waiting scene in the space of the Galerie Carrée at the Villa Arson art center. The three films are integrated in the sculptures offering three types of narration, three shooting procedures and three ways of showing images that revolve around the body.