Genesis Belanger’s installation for Perrotin’s FIAC booth this October marks the American artist’s largest project in Europe. Belanger is known for creating liminal spaces that often point to society’s progressive, yet stagnant, movement in gender stereotypes and equality. Using porcelain and stoneware in soft, fondant hues, Belanger often presents fragments of a story, leaving viewers to wonder what comes next.
While Belanger typically depicts scenes of femininity, for the installation at FIAC, she has imagined a man’s bathroom. In the bathroom, we see an array of objects that appear frozen in time. And while the man does not appear in the picture, he is not far removed, as the sink is running, food is half-eaten, and a blow-dryer is still letting out one last puff of air. The medicine cabinet and surrounding shelves contain typical bathroom objects (toothpaste, pill bottles, and shaving cream) as well as breakfast items (half-eaten food, artificial sweetener for coffee, and a banana). Belanger dates the man by his habits -he still smokes, eats carbs, coifs his hair, and knows how to take his medicine (with a tea spoonful of artificial sweetener). He recalls and critiques a powerful man of a certain age who may be enjoying his last moment on top. We are left unsure whether he will continue to be successful or if his dated ways will succumb to the pressure of our evolving society.