Nov 1, 2019 - Dec 15, 2019


Laughing at Clouds: A Gilles Barbier Exhibition

The Chimney

200 Morgan Avenue, Williamsburg
Brooklyn, NY 11237

The first solo exhibition of French artist Gilles Barbier in New York City. Born in Vanuatu, an archipelago located in the southwest Pacific Ocean, Barbier’s multifaceted practice borrows from science fiction, comics, literature, and cinematography to create new cosmogonies.

Building onto the symbolism and otherworldliness of Mary Poppins’ enchanting story, Barbier transforms the Chimney into a surrealist set. This new commission presents numerous black levitating umbrellas installed at different heights. Strings of speech bubbles fall from their hinged ribs like raindrops.

In The Chimney, Barbier invites the audience to restore dialogue under this protective roof, to engage in an exchange and resist the siren calls of hermetic monologues and manufactured facts. Armed only with crook handles, he calls out to our profound desire for intimacy, and encourages us to maybe even sing in the rain.

For more information, please visit The Chimney.

Opening reception Friday, November 1, 6:30pm - 9:30pm
The Chimney is open Saturday and Sunday, 2pm - 6pm



Gilles Barbier 

Gilles Barbier (b. 1965, Vanuatu) studied literature in Aix-en-Provence (France) and fine arts at the Beaux-Arts in Marseille.

Barbier is represented by the Galerie GP & N Vallois, where he had several solo exhibitions, his next one scheduled in 2020. Other solo exhibitions include: World Wide Wave, La Villa Beatrix Enea, Centre d’Art Contemporain, Anglet, France (2017); Echo System, Musée national d’art contemporain, Seoul, South Korea (2016); Écho Système, Friche de la Belle de Mai, Marseille, France (2015); Le Cockpit, le Vaisseau, Ce que l’on voit depuis le hublot, Espace Claude Berri, Paris, France (2008); Gilles Barbier, Carré d’Art, Musée d’Art Contemporain de Nîmes, France (2006); Gilles Barbier, Kunstverein Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany (2014); Gilles Barbier, Rena Bransten Gallery, San Francisco, United-States (2001); Copywork,  Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, United-States (1999).

His work was exhibition in notable group exhibitions at Grand Palais, Paris, France; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, France; La Maison Rouge, Paris, France; MUCEM, Marseille, France; Musée d’Art Moderne et Contemporain de Strasbourg, Strasbourg, France;  MAC VAL, Vitry-sur-Seine, France; Tri postal, Lille, France; Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lille, Lille, France; Biennale de Lyon, Lyon, France; Musée d’Art moderne et d’Art contemporain de Nice; Musée Regards de Provence, Marseille, France; Friche Belle de Mai, Marseille, France; Maison Guerlain, Paris, France; Von der Heydt Kunsthalle, Wuppertal, Germany; Biennale de Wuzhen, Wuzhen, China;  Taipei Biennale, Taiwan; Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan;  Busan Biennale, Busan, South-Korea; Manarat Al Saadiyat, Abu Dhabi, Dubai.

Barbier’ work can be found in many permanent collections, including:  Centre Pompidou, Paris, France ; Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris, France ; MAC/VAL, Musée d’Art Contemporain du Val de Marne, Vitry-sur-Seine, France ; Musée d’Art Contemporain (MAC), Marseille, France ; Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, United States; ARCO Foundation, Madrid, Spain;  Fonds National d’Art Contemporain, Paris, France ; Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, Paris, France ; Carré d’Art, Musée d’art contemporain, Nîmes, France.

Gilles Barbier lives and works in Marseille, France.

The Chimney

Founded in June 2015, The Chimney is a gallery that promotes multidisciplinary and international artists in its permanent exhibition venue in Brooklyn NY, as well as in exhibition spaces offsite in the United States, France, Mexico and Senegal. The Chimney is directed by Clara Darrason & Jennifer Houdrouge.

The Chimney's curatorial mission is to revitalize and repurpose non-traditional, historical or industrial buildings by commissioning works that address, interact, highlight and transform their architecture and identity.

With the objective to engage with the philosophical discourse of contemporary artistic and curatorial practices, The Chimney has developed a publication series and organizes talks with academics and practitioners across fields as well as, artist-led workshops, and live events such as performances and screenings.