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LOOKING FOR THE URSA MAJOR
By Marie Ilse Bourlanges & Elena Khurtova
Since April 2014, Elena Khurtova and Marie Ilse Bourlanges have researched and intervened with the found archive of Jacques Bourlanges, author of an intriguing theory of a correlation between star constellations and French geography. His investigation connects esoteric symbols with long forgotten history of villages and mountain names by mirroring geometric figures of stars onto the French landscape.
With his passing away in 1991, Bourlanges left an archive of twenty-four boxes, which waited in oblivion until Khurtova and Bourlanges rediscovered them in 2013. The archive contains an overwhelming abundance of notes carefully organised in self-made folders, geometric drawings and a profusion of maps inscribed with mysterious lines.
In September 2015, the duo undertook a research trip to the ‘Ursa Major constellation’ and marked the seven specific points projected by Jacques between Marseille and Nice. The trip functions as a starting point and source material for the exhibition and for the artists invited it offers new perspectives on the subject. Throughout the exhibition period, the artists will process and transform the information collected during the trip, turning the show into a constant transitioning from one state to the other.
Elena Khurtova and Marie Ilse Bourlanges (visual artists duo, RU / FR) will develop series of printed matter, appearing and disappearing through time.
Maarten Heijkamp (visual artist, NL) will present a series of photographs, made in collaboration during the expedition, capturing the sky and the earth on the seven locations.
Mariana Lanari (artist, BR) will research and react on the material about the Ursa Major gathered by Jacques Bourlanges, as well as on other sources.
Xavier Fernández Fuentes (graphic designer, ES) will work on an autonomous edition on the Ursa Major, which will be presented for the finissage of the exhibition.