Ifafa III


Neon tubes

200 x 300 cm (78 3/4 x 118 1/8 in.)

Ifafa III is a sculpture made of fluorescent tubes, which is hung vertically on a wall. In 2003, Bertrand Lavier starts a series whose form refers Frank Stella's Shaped Canvas, which he started in the 1960s. Lavier appropriates the American painter's neutral-colored strips, but replaces them with fluorescent radiations.

Explicitly quoting Stella, Bertrand Lavier makes his the former's motto: “What you see is what you see”. He plays with the painter's theoretical thinking and uses subversion to better test it. By consciously and voluntarily using neon light, this work is in line with that of conceptual artists, such as Dan Flavin and Bruce Nauman. Lavier humorously places his work within a self-referencing approach: to himself, to artists and to schools of thought.

Ifafa III was first shown by the Pinault Collection in the exhibition The Illusion of Light at Palazzo Grassi, in 2014.