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A creative journey in the Hydrodynamics laboratory

Creating a dialogue between art and science: exhibition at GV Art gallery, London

Since its creation 24 years ago, the Hydrodynamics laboratory at Polytechnique has always put an emphasis on collaborating with artists. Jean-Marc Chomaz, co-founder of the lab, Director of Research at the CNRS, Professor at École Polytechnique and associate editor of the Journal of Fluid Mechanics, believes that in order for such a collaboration to be meaningful, the artists and scientists must work and discuss together in the lab, sharing both science and art in a journey where they exchange role continuously, putting them outside of their comfort zones. It is in this context that Anaïs Tondeur, a visual artist who works and lives in Paris, has been commissioned as an artist in residence at the Hydrodynamics laboratory on a project proposed by Jean-Marc Chomaz with the support of LaSIPS department of University Paris-Saclay (research in systems and engineering sciences) and the Sustainable Development Chair of Polytechnique in partnership with EDF.

Depth Sounders, 2014, shadowgram, C-Print, Courtesy of the artist and GV Art Gallery

She and Jean-Marc Chomaz started collaborating with students from the Ingénieur Polytechnicien program in 2013. Together, they worked on the notion of the Anthropocene, a new geologic term used to refer to the significant global impact of all human activities on Earth's ecosystems, including more than just climate change, and they have focused their interest on deep marine circulation and tectonic plate dynamics. Their work involved the oceanographic international community, including scientists from University Pierre and Marie Curie, École Normale Supérieure in France and Cambridge University (UK). It led to seven artistic installations which are now part of Anaïs Tondeur and Jean-Marc Chomaz exhibition at GV Art gallery in London

This exhibition, named 'Lost in Fathoms', is presenting those installations as well as shadow graphic images created around a narrative that challenges our perception of oceanic and geologic time scales and human's impact on the environment. The show's starting point is the disappearance of Nuuk island: could that be a one-off or a direct consequence of the emergence of the Anthropocene?

Anaïs Tondeur's work has been presented in solo exhibitions in Paris and London and group exhibitions shown nationally and internationally. She graduated from the MA Mixed Media at Royal College of Art in 2010, after completing a BA (Hons) in Textiles at Central Saint Martins in 2008.

Jean-Marc Chomaz is co-founder of the Labofactory artist group and the Diagonal Paris-Saclay project. His artistic works have led to several exhibitions (including Paris Nuit Blanche, Salon des réalités nouvelles, Espace Fondation EDF, La science de l’art, ArtRock festival).

When and where?

Anaïs Tondeur's exhibition in collaboration with Jean-Marc Chomaz: 17 October until 29 November 2014
GV Art gallery, London, 49 Chiltern Street, Marylebone, London W1U 6LY

Dowload the press release

Download the exhibition's catalogue