French sculptor Mickaël Obrénovitch brings eye-opening works to Macau.

 
Exhibition named “Human Roots” will feature almost complete collection of Obrénovitch’s works. The spectacular tree trunk sculptures will be displayed at IAOHIN Gallery and Sofitel At Ponte 16 as part of “Le French May” festival.

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Macau, 2 March 2015

Huge tree roots sourced from the Indonesian rainforest will soon greet guests checking-in at Macau Sofitel’s lobby and visitors to IAOHIN Gallery. Looking raw and magnificent, the works took French artist Mickaël Obrénovitch years to complete. The roots are the artist’s metaphor for a typical, yet profound question about men and nature.

In the exhibition, named “Human Roots”, Obrénovitch explores the relationship between the two.

The works will be displayed and available for sale between 22nd of April and 31st of June at IAOHIN Gallery, located at Macau’s historic Rua da Tercena.

The series is made from centuries old teak tree roots found on Indonesia’s Java Island. Remnants of a disappearing colony, these stumps are remains of rainforest clearance. Found and embellished by the sculptor, they are the subject of human exploitation, but at the same time make men realise the significance of nature and its power.

“The stories embedded in the exhibition and artworks are really grand. I have frequently had doubts as to whether I really need to cover such an ambitious topic at my age,” the 36 year old admitted at the press preview.

He expressed concerns that the theme might sound “too grand” for an artist in late 30s to present to the world. Yet, it was the bold approach to grand questions that won the French artist recognition in the global art scene.

Obrénovitch, who moved to the isolated French island of Réunion on the Indian Ocean, is known in Europe and Indonesia for large organic wood installations that address relations between nature and civilisation.

The artist, whose works decorate lobbies of luxury Bali hotels and Hollywood villas, is the most prominent sculptor yet to exhibit in Macau. The exhibition at IAOHIN Gallery is a broad survey of his 15-year career in art and displays his nearly complete sculpture collection.

His respect for nature is clear in the “Human Roots” series, which comprises wooden sculptures built from the ancient tree trunks found in Indonesia’s rainforest. He adopted tree roots as a medium after seeing tree stumps abandoned by loggers one hot summer in the Indonesian island of Java. He was intrigued by the continued use of wood in the industrialised society and the centuries-old wood craft-making skills that have passed down from generation to generation.

“Ancient tree roots show indigenous characteristics in nature and highlight environmental issues of wood use,” explains Simon Lam, curator of the exhibition.

Mickaël Obrénovitch has a real passion for wood: since childhood he Swiss replica watches has been impressed by the slow and silent growth of this living material which thrusts its roots deep down into the ground and Replica breitling rises majestically up in the air. The sculptor has made wood the vehicle for his art.

“Wood is an incredible medium, AAA Replica Luxury Watches trees feed on earth, air and water and they enriched my understanding of the world. Trees and wood encompass my view on the meaning of life,” Obrénovitch stated.

Along his travels and in his adopted homeland, Mickaël Obrénovitch always choose to work with the local tree species: olive tree in the Mediterranean, teak in Indonesia, tamarind and coffee wood in Africa and bamboo in China. “My works boost the strong character of nature, its language and fragrance, while placing my creation process in harmony with the environment”, he added.

Obrénovich’s works will be displayed at IAOHIN Gallery, which is the only local art gallery selected to host the annual “Le French May” art festival. IAOHIN is the first privately run art venue in Macau. Opened in 2011, the gallery hosted exhibitions of world famous artists, including Portuguese painter Carlos Farinha, Macau’s Jaques Le Nantec, and Korean artist Young Oh Sook.

“Le French May” is a pan-Asian art festival with the mission to promote French culture and art throughout the Orient. Established in 1993, it is one of the largest cultural events in Asia. With more than 120 programmes presented across two months, it has become an iconic part of Hong Kong’s cultural scene that attracts approximately 2 million visitors each year. For 22 years, Le French May has been both truly international and distinctly local and now wishes to contribute to the unique appeal of Macau.

The exhibition curator, Mr. Simon Lam can be contacted via email: simon@iaohin.com or by telephone: (+853) 6310 0191.