Ten years after her video W.O.R.K.S & D.A.Y.S. was shown in the vestibule at La maison rouge, Hélène Delprat has imagined an exhibition specifically for the Foundation, titled I did it my way. Dark films and mirrors, vast paintings with hilarious titles, cinema voices, radiophonic drawings, birds' heads, photocopies, Louis XIV, Georges Franju's Judex and the curious rite of the tonsure… here's what we can expect from this "lugubrious game"1, one that is both serious and funny. Hélène Delprat likes nothing more than to play around with L'Extension du Pire, the monstrous ugliness or beauty of things2, Macbeth's witches, actors, the ridiculousness in each of us, laughter…
Inspired by literature – from Ovid's The Metamorphoses to the contemporary novel by way of Mary Shelley and Virginia Woolf – film, internet databases, radio and press, each day brings new opportunity for Hélène Delprat to develop a sensitive and darkly humoristic art that takes in both fiction and documentary. She has, for the past several years, embarked on the contemporary volume of the Très riches heures de sa vie in painting, film, drawings and photography. Her filmed journal and Days blog are part of this, together with Les (fausses) conférences, a film which strings together a world of scheduled and unscheduled moments, including appearances by Eric von Stroheim, Buzz Aldrin and Jean Cocteau, among others.
Hélène Delprat's work is about representation, memory, legacy and recording. The energy-images she proposes – whatever the medium – trigger constellations and offshoots, figurative and conceptual associations, inventories almost.
Hélène Delprat is like a character from her work, sympathetic towards dandies, extravagants, and those who, without the least pretension, cherish fake and finery with equal delight. Delving constantly into "the bric-a-brac of which we are made"3, she is at pains never to become trapped in the world she invents, extricating herself through documentaries and interviews4. Her singularity and curiosity make her an artist in a category of her own.