Video Art
Taming Nature:
Animated Perspectives

Video Art by Vergine Keaton, Françoise Pétrovitch, and Christine Rebet


January 16–February 23, 2019

As a special introduction to FIAF’s Animation First Festival, the FIAF Gallery opens on January 16 with Taming Nature: Animated Perspectives. This video art exhibition features recent works by three women artists from France who each use distinct animation techniques to explore how nature and humans adapt to changing and sometimes hostile environments.

Françoise Pétrovitch’s painterly Panorama (2016) juxtaposes a bird, an iris, a floating woman, and other elements of nature, as if imprinted on the retina, to blur the border between the external world and the subconscious. The violence of this relationship between interiority and reality also explodes In the Soldier’s Head (2015) through Christine Rebet’s hand-drawn animations of haunting traumatic memories resurfacing. Vergine Keaton uses rotoscoping to invoke distant memory through archival film footage of the now extinct species in The Tasmanian Tiger (2018). Keaton’s work pushes the boundaries of how nature can empower itself to preempt its own extinction.

The three works will run on continuous loop in the FIAF Gallery through February 23.

Curated by Courtney Geraghty, FIAF Artistic Director.

  • Vergine Keaton
    • After studying graphic design and cinema, Vergine Keaton (b. 1981, Lyon, France) created her first animated short film, I was crying out at life. or for it in 2009. It screened at nearly 100 festivals, including the ACID selection at Cannes Film Festival, and is currently featured as Times Square Arts’ Midnight Moment in collaboration with FIAF throughout January, 2019. Her following film, Marzevan (2015), experiments with 3D mapping and was selected for Belo Horizonte International Short Film Festival in Brazil, Riverside Short Film & Video Festival in New Haven, MO, and was a short-list nominee in the category Best Short Animated Film at the 2017 César Awards in France. Her third film, The Tasmanian Tiger (2018), was selected for the official competition for the 2018 Berlinale and screened at a number of international festivals that year. In addition to filmmaking, Keaton’s artistic practice includes art installation, and she is currently preparing an exhibition around Dante’s Inferno for the Centre Pompidou-Metz in France in 2019.

      Photo © Marie Rouge

  • Françoise Pétrovitch
    • Françoise Pétrovitch has been part of numerous solo exhibitions in France and abroad. She recently exhibited at the Keramis Museum – Center for Ceramics and the Center for Engraving and Printed Image, La Louvière, Belgium; the Campredon Art Center, L’Isle-sur-la-Sorgue, France; and Frac Paca, Marseille. She is the first contemporary artist to benefit from a monographic exhibition at Louvre Lens and will be the subject of several important solo exhibitions in France at venues including the Hélène and Édouard Leclerc Fund for Culture, Landerneau; the Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris; Villa Savoye, Poissy; and the Children’s Gallery of the National Museum of Modern Art Center Georges Pompidou, Paris. Her work is in the collection of the National Museum of Modern Art, Center Georges Pompidou, Paris; the National Museum of Women in the Arts in Washington, DC; the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art in Tarpon Springs, Florida; the Keramis Museum, La Louvière, Belgium; the Museums of Modern and Contemporary Art in Saint-Etienne and Strasbourg, France; the Musée d’Art Contemporain du Val-de-Marne, France; and many regional collections of contemporary art (FRACs) in France.

      Photo © Hervé Plumet

  • Christine Rebet
    • Christine Rebet (b. Lyon, France, lives and works in New York) received her MFA from Columbia University and her BFA from Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design in London. Her work is based on drawing which she develops into forms ranging from animation to the environment, installation, and performance art. At the heart of her work is the elaboration of historical traumas in the context of a personal reinterpretation and consequent reanimation. Rebet has previously exhibited and held performances in various international venues including: LACE (Los Angeles), Human Resources (Los Angeles), Kunsthal KAdE (Amersfoort, Netherlands), Grieder Contemporary (Zurich), AlbumArte (Rome), Unge Kunstneres Samfund, (Oslo), Sculpture Center (New York); the Institute of Contemporary Art (Singapore); the Cartier Foundation (Paris); the Fisher Landau Center for Art (New York); and Le Magasin (Grenoble, France). Her most recent solo exhibition, Thunderbird, was held at Bureau (New York). Her films have been screened at various events and festivals including Hong Kong Film Festival, Wexner Center for the Arts (Columbus, Ohio), Husets Biograf (Copenhagen), Winkleman Gallery (New York), the Berlinale Short Film Festival (Berlin), and the Moderna Museet (Stockholm). Her recent film, In the Soldier’s Head (2015), is currently touring film festivals worldwide. Rebet’s work appears in the public collections of the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris) and the Musée d’Art Contemporain du Val-de-Marne (Vitry-sur-Seine, France).

      Photo © PierLuigi Di Pietro