gigantic model (more than 6 metres in length) of a boat,
consisting of a construction of tubes of grey, synthetic
material, is the first embodiment of an ambitious project
that marks a new phase in the artist´s work. This
project, entitled Hécatée after a Greek
geographer who in the XIth century BCE conceived the
first elements required for a mapping of the Mediterranean,
is exceptional both in its technical and economic implications,
and for its intellectual, cultural and relational objectives.
project Hécatée consists primarily in
the invention of a boat that is destined in the near
future to cross the Mediterranean, which at the same
time will be the vehicle and the receptacle for the
"memorial substances" that its crew will collect.
This renewable crew will be brought together from a
large array of specialists in the representation of
the world (geographers, biologists, astrophysicians,
philosophers ...), so that for the course and duration
of its peregrinations the boat will become a depository
of knowledge, memories, and of the languages spoken
we rediscover a dialectic of the container and the contained
that is so dear to the artist. The hull of the boat
is formed of cylindrical containers that hold the "substances"
which the crew will collect in order to reconstruct
the strata of the memory of programmed nomadism. For
this purpose, Hécatée is structured like
a vast mobile container, where the "memorial substances"
are sorted according to their density and their physical
volume: the heavy elements will be placed in the bottom
of the boat, whereas fragile documents will be stacked
inside, where they are protected.
beauty of the project lies in the confrontation of the
utopian and metaphoric dimensions with the technical
challenges of its realisation. The first stage of the
work, which has led to the construction of the mock-up,
is completed. The project is technically feasible both
in terms of its structural design and its seafaring
qualities. The project Hécatée has already
begun to fulfil its purpose in crystallising energies,
knowledge and imagination.
Réol (extract), in Art Press, no. 215, 1996