Guest Artist

Duo Taous Damani

As an artist-researcher, SMITH experiments with and explores the links between contemporary humanity and its boundary figures - ghosts, mutants, hybrids - engaging his own body and that of his collaborators - writers, astronauts, shamans, engineers, designers, performers or composers - in indisciplinary projects. Disturbing genres, languages and disciplines, SMITH proposes curious works, in the etymological sense of cura: curiosity and care for the world around us, the terrestrial and the celestial, the human and the non-human, the visible and the invisible, imagination and fiction. Thermal cameras, drones, neon lights, implantations of electronic chips and subcutaneous meteorites, atomic mutations or trance practices characterize his fluid work composed with technological and spiritual means that incorporate the dimensions of mystery and dream. Between 2017 and 2021, SMITH focuses on "Désidération", a constellational work exploring the disunited links between our contemporary humanity and the cosmos, notably presented at the Rencontres d'Arles in 2021. Today, as an art philosopher, SMITH pursues this quest through his practice of ancestral spiritual technologies (cognitive trance, Amazonian medicine) and interstitial bodily states (gender transition, weightlessness experience, skin implantations of extraterrestrial materials), in order to explore in a new way our relationship with the other, with the beyond, with that which passes through us, surpasses us and outlives us. The use of unusual photographic techniques, such as the thermal camera with which he has signed numerous works over the past 15 years, enable the artist to propose new ways of approaching the visible. His work (exhibitions, films, performances, conferences) is regularly presented in the form of solo exhibitions, notably at the Rencontres d'Arles, the Palais de Tokyo, the Centre Pompidou, in European countries, as well as China, Korea and Latin America (Chile, Uruguay, Mexico). Several monographs are devoted to his work, including "Löyly" (Filigranes, 2013), "Saturnium" (Actes Sud, 2018), Valparaiso (André Frère, 2019), "Désidération (prologue)" (Textuel, 2021), "Desiderea Nuncia" (Palais books, 2021, Book Prize at the Rencontres d'Arles). SMITH is also the author of several short films, including "Spectrographies" (2013 - with Mathieu Amalric, Dominique Blanc, Florence Thomassin, Bernard Stiegler...); "TRAUM" (2015), or "Les Apocalyptiques" (2019). He also signs podcasts (France Culture), choreographic shows, performances, and numerous photographic commissions for press (Le Monde, Télérama, Libération…), institutions (Centre Pompidou), and brands (Chanel). SMITH is represented by Christophe Gaillard gallery and Modds agency in Paris. He is currently an associate artist at La Filature - Scène Nationale in Mulhouse, and laureate of the 2023 Villa Albertine in partnership with the writer Marie NDiaye. SMITH forms the duo Superpartners with the curator Nadège Piton; they published the book "Transgalactic" in 2020 about queer & trans presences in contemporary photography, and curated the eponymous exhibition presented in 2023 at La Filature.