Lévitation de chaise

Philippe Ramette

Date : 2005

Medium : Sculpture

Size : 170 x 150 x 150 cm


Philippe Ramette’s chair levitation questions the laws of gravity, thus fitting in line with his latest photographic works. This painted bronze sculpture simulates the true textures of wood and rope, creating the illusion of a levitation, in a poetical way. The artist himself calls this work a “photographical sculpture”. It depicts the all-at-onceness of a movement: the moment when the chair takes off and escapes from the rope that retains it.

© Adagp, Paris, 2005

The guide

The first thing the viewer notices is quite simply a chair and a rope. But these are no ordinary objects. They are of course objects used for hanging oneself. Then the doubt sets in. This is no ordinary work of art. The rope is not tied to the ceiling, but instead stands up rigidly as though summoned by a snake charmer. And the chair levitates well above the ground, as if it is held back by the rope. This deliberate disordering of the laws of gravity is both strange but intriguing and amusing. Philippe Ramette awakens our curiosity. But what exactly is this hybrid object? It is reminiscent of the improbable combinations of objects in surrealism that call on our imagination by playing on ambiguity. How did the artist manage to defy the logical order of things? The principle is simple. On closer inspection, it appears that the chair is in fact made of metal painted to look like wood. The rope is also an imitation that Ramette made using traditional sculpture techniques. It is in fact a painted bronze sculpture. Ramette’s skill lies not so much in the technique used but in the inventiveness of the concept and the artist’s extraordinary ability to create another world. It is up to the viewer now to step inside his world.