Noemi Conan, Transmission, 2024
Noemi Conan / The Fern Flowers
Jun 7 – Jul 20, 2024
Traits Libres Gallery
Paris, France

The Fern Flowers is Noemi Conan’s first solo exhibition at Traits Libres Gallery. It offers a journey back in time to an era and a place that no longer exist on maps, to a small community in western Poland after the fall of the Soviet regime. This journey is also a quest for Noémi Conan’s identity.

Fern flowers are magical flowers linked to the myths of Baltic, Estonian, and Slavic cultural traditions. According to legend, they bloom only once a year, on the eve of the summer solstice, June 20th. They are said to bring good luck to anyone who finds them.

[ . . . ]

Entering Noemi Conan’s exhibition is to be drawn into stories, her story. Those of feminine figures, those of the artist. They are present everywhere in the gallery, painted in acrylic and watercolor, in close-ups or from low angles. They look at each other and observe us, they stare us down. They form a community whose temporality and geography elude us, some are self-portraits. Clues are provided: pine trees, a Fiat 125 Pb, which is the car of the artist’s grandparents, cigarettes, houses, an electric pylon. These elements are indicative. Like cinematic scenes, the artist re-enacts the environment of her childhood to understand her identity. Her mother, her aunts, these working women, some of whom raised their children alone in this Eastern Europe ex-socialist regime. Work as social recognition, the accumulation of odd jobs to earn enough money to live, raising children in both senses of the word. But also the impossibility of engaging in social struggles because the role of mother was taken on at the end of the workday.

Exhibition text by Fabienne Bideaud, art critic and curator.

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