7 February - 30 march 2008

Marie José Burki

Video installations

Show opening Wednesday 6 February starting at 6 pm

Show runs from 7 February to 30 March 2008
Tuesday- Sunday, noon to 6 pm, free entry

Marie José Burki studied literature at the University of Geneva while at the same time pursuing an arts degree at the Ecole Supérieure d'Art Visuel (ESAV), now known as the Haute école d'art et de design (HEAD). This dual preparation led her initially to grant literature and more generally language a preponderant role in her artwork.

Marie José Burki, Exposure: Studio Light, 2007

As a student at Silvie and Chérif Defraoui's studio, Burki created an eleven-minute tape in 1985 called Celui qui a vu passer les éléphants blancs (He Who Has Seen White Elephants Passing), a coproduction with Saint-Gervais Geneva that went on to win numerous festival awards. And in 1990, following a residency at the P.S.1 Studio in New York that ran for several months, she created Reading Over and Over. Finally, in 1991, Burki realized, once again with Saint-Gervais's production assistance, C'est un grand mot que cela (That's a Big Word That), freely inspired by Diderot's Jacques the Fatalist, and in 1993, De loin en loin (Here and There). These two works question through narrative the notion of wandering, which is understood as both a development in time and a movement in space.
Following her initial videos, which were in fact constructed like films, Burki started in on work that shows a more spatial conception and is intended for display in an exhibition. With the video series titled ANIMAUX (1991) and A.NI.MAUX (1992) she began doing installations, with relatively simple displays (projection on a wall or the floor, monitors on pedestals or attached to the wall) that occasionally assume spectacular dimensions, revealing the full measure of her approach to art.

Since 1993 Burki has been living and working in Brussels and since 1986 the artist has participated in numerous solo and group shows. In 1992 she was part of Jan Hoet's Documenta IX and in 1994, and for several years after, she was a visiting artist at Amsterdam's Rijksakademie. Her most recent show in Geneva dates from 2000, at the Musée d'Art et d'Histoire in conjunction with the BCG Prize, where she presented for the first time Mais que pouvait bien raconter Saint François aux oiseaux (So What Indeed Might Saint Francis Tell the Birds). Her most recent solo show in Switzerland was held last year a Zurich's Helmhaus.

Marie José Burki, De nos jours, 2003

In connecting speech/text/word and image, Burki questions the theater of our representations and memories. The images often represent a gaze that is waiting for an event that never comes. Via the movements of a camera that wanders through fragments of landscape and static scenes, the images skim over rather than reveal the visible. In such an atmosphere of expectation, and with the space constructed by the artist, with her play of language and texts, her sudden shifts and movements, we become aware that in fact it is images that observe us. It is a starting point that brings us back to our perception of reality, which is shaped today by the media's visual flood. Our ambiguous relationship with an image-saturated world is caught out, since nowadays one image is no better or worse than another. It is only in the interstices, the intervals, the breaths suggested by the juxtapositions and their divergences, that Burki's art reveals to us a perception of reality and the history in its wake.

De nos jours, 2003, Exposure: Studio Light, 2007, De nos jours (un matin), 2008, as well as a new production of the artist will be exposed on the first and second floors of the center for the contemporary image.

Marie José Burki, Marie José Burki, De nos jours (dedans), 2007


Marie José Burki is born in 1961 in Bienne. She lives and works in Bruxelles.

Arts degree, University of Geneva.

Advanced degree, High School of visual art, Geneva.

Solo shows (selected, since 2000)


Video works ,Denmark
Time after, Time Along, The River (Thames), Londres (open air projection and radio show) (cat.)
Mais que pouvait bien raconter Saint François aux oiseaux, Musée d'art et d'histoire, Genève

Time After, Time Along, The River (Hudson), New York ( open air projection ) (cat.)
Time After, Time Along, The River (videos, photographs and book), La lettre volée, Bruxelles
Centre Pasquart, Bienne

Galerie Nelson, Paris
Les Halles, Porrentruy
Le Studio, Galerie Yvon Lambert, Paris
Horizons of a world, Metronom, Barcelone

Horizons of a world, Argos, Bruxelles
Where was I born and what is my name (Kunsthof mit Elefanten), Kunsthof Zürich
Grand-Hornu, Hornu

Galerie Baronian-Francey, Bruxelles
Lehmann Maupin, New York

Galerie Baronian-Francey, Bruxelles
Horizons of a World, Chateau des Adhémar, Montélimar
De nos jours, Helmhaus, Zurich
CRAC, Sète
Galerie Nelson-Freeman, Paris

Group shows (selected, since 2000)

Close up, Kunstverein, Freiburg - Kunsthaus Baselland, Muttenz (cat.)
Une mise en scène du réel : artiste/acteur, Villa Arson, Nice (cat.)
Pause, Galerie Aline Vidal, Paris

Close up, Kunstverein, Hannovre
...troubler l'écho du temps, oeuvres de la Collection, Musée d'art contemporain, Lyon
Milano Europa 2000. Fine secoro. I semi del futuro, Trienale, Milan

Le Beau Corps de la Mémoire, MAC's, Grand-Hornu, Hornu

Animaux. Von tieren und Meschen, Seedamm Kulturzentrum, Pfäffikon

Voisins Officiels, collection du Musée des Arts Contemporains du Grand Hornu, Hornu, Belgique
Les jours s'en vont je demeure, Le Triangle, Rennes
Enchanté château, Château d'Arenthon, Alex
Animaux...Animaux, Musée d'art contemporain, Lyon
Nütlich-süss-museal, das fotografierte Tier, Museum Folkwang, Essen
Gesehene Worte. Kunst und Literatur, Kunsthaus, Langenthal

Charpente, Le château de Nyon, Musée historique des porcelaines, Nyon
Zoo, La centrale électrique, Centre européen d'art contemporain, Bruxelles
The projection Project, Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp, Antwerp
Work Slavery, Museum on the seam, Israël
The Projection Project, Muhka, Belgique

25th Anniversary, Galerie Nelson, Paris
Touch-Down, Galerie Friedrich, Bâle

Marie José Burki, De nos jours (un jour), 2007