CANNES – What relevance does a century-old artistic movement whose fundamental premise is pure abstraction bear in our contemporary moment, which is riddled with a constant stream of rich images, sounds, and information?
While we can praise Dutch movement De Stijl’s minimalism for the break it provides from relentless sensory overload, Sabine Marcelis demonstrates that there is more to be remembered than a mere set of aesthetic principles.
Commissioned to design the Dutch Pavilion at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, Marcelis made modernist artist Piet Mondrian’s Composition with Red, Blue, and Yellow (1935) into a three-dimensional world that visitors could walk into.
Marcelis's Spatial Composition with Red, Blue, and Yellow drew inspiration from the movement’s tendency towards multidisciplinary experimentation. Her installation melds the creative fields of architecture, design and film, and exceeds their boundaries to create a multisensory immersive environment.
Marcelis used a resin-casting technique to produce the yellow, red, and blue translucent screens onto which video clips were projected. This material experimentation – where canonical cultural references meet new projection technology and craft techniques – hints at the different forms cross-disciplinary innovation can take across eras. Marcelis’s installation not only translates Mondrian’s two-dimensional painting into an immersive spatial design project, but also demonstrates how the avant-garde spirit transcends space and time.