Photography STEFAN MILEV

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Sarah Trouche is a French visual artist. She is part of the class of 2007 of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts (Paris National School of Fine Arts), where she trained under artists such as Jean-Marc Bustamante, Jacky Chriqui and Guillaume Paris. She complemented her training under artist Mike Kelley at the Pasadena Art Center College of Design, where she graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in 2007 and at Goldsmiths, University of London, where she graduated with a Master in Performance-Making in 2008. She also took a short-film directing course in 2014 at the Gaîté Lyrique, a digital arts center located in Paris. 

In 2008, Sarah Trouche teamed up with architect Benjamin Herr to create a European multidisciplinary artist collective, whose “winterstory in the wild jungle” project was joined by more than 200 artists. The collective will receive a prize from the city of Paris for the “Hit and Run” project, which turned a cargo container into a creation and exhibition space for a duration of thirty days. 

Sarah Trouche’s work revolves around her many journeys and expeditions, which brings her in contact with a vast array of communities, from micro-societies to globalized metropolises. Her critical scrutiny reveals the growing anomalies, ambiguities, and social and political contradictions that underlie the places she’s visiting. 

Her artistic media are mainly performance, photography and video. She is a recipient of the Extramural Villa Médicis grant in the living arts category for her Arriba project and she participated in numerous collective exhibits, both in France (“Camera as release” for Paris Photo 2014, Centre d’Art le Lait, le 104, the Brownstone foundation) and abroad (Artbat fest 2014 in Kazakhstan, Marrakech Biennial 2014 in Morocco, OCAC Taipei in Taiwan, New York Armory Show in the States, Hokusen gallery in Tokyo, Japan). She’s also been invited to collaborate with several art schools, namely the École des Beaux-Arts de Metz and the École des Beaux-Arts d’Annecy in France and the University of North Carolina, Charlotte in the States and the National Taiwan University of Arts abroad. Her work has been acquired by JP Morgan, Sjberwin, the Benenson Collection, the Mosquera Collection and the IADA Foundation.

We are so thankful that we could get to know her a little better and see her latest creation. 

– Bio Translation, Emmanuel Caclin 

What is your creative process? 

I don’t have a main creative process. I follow my instincts and I am interested by the theme of otherness. I like to be a white page for the people. I am here to allow them to protest and speak out loud. I believe that with courage and patience we can create a world more gender equal. 

Could you discuss your latest work? What was your intention behind it and how do the materials work with this installation?

My latest work is a piece called “Dide”. It means “Stand Up” in Yoruba. It was created in Cotonou with the choreographer Marcel Gbeffa while I was doing an art residency in at le Centre. It was an amazing experience and full of creativity. The piece Dide is about men that will question the gélédé mask feminism in Africa. The piece will be shown in the CDCN of Paris in 2020. It will tour as a dance piece but also an art exhibition. Some of the performances are supported by the Institute Francais, The Centre in Cotonou and the Marguerite Millin Gallery. 

Tell us about your recent showing in Paris and LA, what was that like?

I have been working on a performance piece called “You should wear your revolution”. I believe that we can fight the  patriarchy with small actions. I thought of an idea to collect thousand of underwear from women around the world. If you want to be part of a feminist performance please send me old but clean underwear. The response was incredible. It’s an ongoing process with more to come. 

What are your biggest challenges as an artist?

My biggest challenge is to be a female artist. I have to face discrimination in the market quite often in the exposure with journalist, artists, and curators. You always have to prove more than others in this market. But after being nominated  for ”Chevaliers Des Arts Et Des Lettres “ I am really proud of myself because I believe in the values of the republic.  Liberty, equality and fraternity.

How do ethnic cultures influence your work?

I am influenced by others. I have travelled a lot with my art  to Europe, Asia and America. I believe in the fact that we are world citizens and need to accept that we are all equal but all different and that is our treasure. 

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Does your art have reoccurring themes that you’re interested in? What are they?

Yes, my work does have a reoccurring themes. I like to see myself as a political artist. My body is my weapon and the people are my strength. 

What are your future plans in terms of work and exhibitions?

I am working on a new film called “Les Protagonistes”. It is a short film that gives voice to habitant in rural France. I would like that rural habitants have the same rights and services of people in cities. I am not a politician but I can work on bringing cultural equality to the conversation. I am really proud of these steps I have taken. The artistic gestures I have put in place I hope will touch coming generations and will allow the audience to discover and experience art.

As an artist, does social media play a part in your life?

Social media has a big impact in my life. I love to be in contact with others from all over the world and I love to share with them what I am experiencing. It also allows me to implicate participants in my actions. For example, the underwear called “you should wear your revolutions” has been made throughout socials media. Recently, I invited people from all over the world to send me photos of their sunrise.  We were sharing sunrises all day. It was amazing and beautiful. The series of photos from the audience that took part in this have been shown and shared in my last exhibition.

What do you hope that the public takes away from your work?

I don’t have any expectation. I feel lucky to share my artistic visions everyday with my art. 

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