Saâdane Afif has turned the printed dissemination of Fountain into a monumental project. The Fountain Archives consists of three elements: the first, the ‘active’ part of the project, consists of the pages of publications, books, catalogues and magazines that reproduce a photograph of this iconic piece. The pages, taken from the collection of publications that the artist has been collecting since 2008, are torn out, framed and inventoried, creating a new readymade from one of the earliest and certainly the most iconic readymades in the history of art.
The second, the ‘passive’ part of the project, which Afif also calls the ‘mould’, is the library with the books from which the pages were taken. The shelves create an archive around Duchamp’s readymade, from which the common initiator has been removed: an archive without its object. This presentation of the library – complete for the first time in the installation at the Fundació Antoni Tàpies – by depriving the publications of their usual function, also gives it a sculptural character.
The third element, called Fountain Archives (Augmented), integrates the pages of publications with the comments generated over the years by Saâdane Afif’s work, illustrated with a reproduction of Fountain; the archive within the archive, in a kind of mise en abyme. These publications point to an evolution in the development and perception of The Fountain Archives as a work of art.
Appropriating inventory methodologies and playing with traditional museographic codes, Afif questions the production system, the status of the work of art, its reproducibility and the infinite field of its interpretations, as well as his formidable ability to produce narratives.
True to his way of doing things since 2004, Saâdane Afif has also commissioned several cultural producers to write lyrics based on Fountain for this project. A selection of these songs is part of the exhibition.
18.06.2021 – 20.02.2022