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BMW Group France presents ‘The Green Ray’ by the winning duo of the BMW ART MAKERS programme, artist Mustapha Azeroual and curator Marjolaine Lévy.

As part of the BMW ART MAKERS programme, the artist Mustapha Azeroual and the curator Marjolaine Lévy are developing their project ‘The Green Ray’. This artistic project is a new experiment resulting from their collaboration and will culminate in an original, immersive exhibition designed specifically to be shown at the Cloister of Saint-Trophime during the Rencontres d'Arles. The exhibition will be redesigned for Paris Photo at the Grand Palais, Paris.

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  • The BMW ART MAKERS programme supports an artist- curator duo in the creation of an artistic project dedicated to visual arts and innovation and questioning social issues.
  • The ‘Green Ray' will be presented as an original, immersive exhibition at the Rencontres d'Arles  Festival this summer and at Paris Photo in November.
  • BMW, a partner of Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez, will also show ‘The Green Ray’ during the regatta in September, giving the artist and the sailors the opportunity to share their views of sunrises and sunsets on the high seas.
  • For the first time, BMW ART MAKERS will exhibit a work by the winning duo at Art Basel Paris in October.
  • BMW will provide a fleet of electrified cars for VIPs and guests of the Rencontres d'Arles.

Paris/Munich. As part of the BMW ART MAKERS programme, the artist Mustapha Azeroual and the curator Marjolaine Lévy are developing their project ‘The Green Ray’. This artistic project is a new experiment resulting from their collaboration and will culminate in an original, immersive exhibition designed specifically to be shown at the Cloister of Saint-Trophime during the Rencontres d'Arles. The exhibition will be redesigned for Paris Photo at the Grand Palais, Paris.

Who has not dreamed of seeing what the eye cannot grasp?
This is the ambition of ‘The Green Ray’, which is an extension of Mustapha Azeroual's photographic practice, the core of which is the production of abstract images that seek to give form to light and colour. These unique, unpublished images, presented at the Rencontres d'Arles, illustrate a protocol that began with recording the colour of the sky at sunrise and sunset on the high seas, in the Arctic, Indian and Pacific Oceans, and in the Mediterranean Sea - territories that Mustapha Azeroual had never explored before.

The artist didn't have to travel at all, thanks to a close collaboration with sailors and navigators, who had to follow a strict shooting protocol. The sailing communities that Mustapha Azeroual consulted are diverse, including private sailors and the ship Le Ponant.

Mustapha Azeroual then chose the most appropriate colours to create abstractions and reproduced them on lenticular supports. Lenticular printing makes it possible to create visual effects on a still image, such as relief or movement. The artist's abstract images, as rich and varied as they are, subtly show the influence of human activity and climatic phenomena. In fact, the colour of the sky, even on the high seas, is inextricably linked to these phenomena. Sensitive, poetic, and accessible at the same time, these exceptionally colourful images offer a glimpse into the transformation of the world.

Immersive, adaptable, and reusable scenography
For the Rencontres d'Arles, in the cloister of Saint-Trophime, visitors are invited to enter an airlock, to accustom their retinas to the play of colours, and then to plunge headlong into colour, to see these abstract gradations through an immersive installation in the form of two lenticular panopticons over 4 metres high. The installation created for ‘The Green Ray’ is unique in that lenticular works have never been produced on such a monumental scale.

Marjolaine Lévy refers to the art historian Alexander Alberro, who believes that “the more works engage the viewer's nervous system, the more egalitarian they are”. All viewers will have their retinas stimulated and activated by the installation. With this exhibition, the winning duo will contribute to an experience that engages the viewer's senses above and beyond their knowledge of art.

To encourage contemplation, the exhibition furniture has been specially made from bio-based and recyclable materials in collaboration with the design department of the BMW Group Research and Development Centre in Munich.

‘The Green Ray’ is part of the BMW Group's environmental strategy, which aims to reduce the impact of its activities; by delegating photography to communities of sailors to limit travel, working closely with BMW Group designers on recyclable furniture and designing sceneographic structures that can be reused in future exhibitions.

This completely new installation fits perfectly with the themes of innovation and commitment promoted by the BMW ART MAKERS programme.

Mustapha Azeroual and Marjolaine Lévy said: “We are delighted to be the winners of the BMW Art Makers programme, both because it's a project that combines our shared reflections on narrative abstraction and because it's also an exhibition based on a close collaboration between artist and curator, which is quite rare, from the writing of the project to its production. Finally, the BMW ART MAKERS programme, with its focus on contemporary environmental and social issues, is the ideal context for us to bring our project ‘The Green Ray’ to a successful conclusion, an installation that is firmly rooted in the issues of our time and offers the public a unique immersive experience”.

For the BMW ART MAKERS programme, BMW Group France is offering a grant of €10,000 for the artist and €8,000 for the curator, a research and production budget of €15,000, as well as a solo exhibition at the Rencontres d'Arles and Paris Photo and an adapted display at Art Basel Paris and Les Voiles de Saint Tropez, of which BMW is an official partner.

"This programme highlights the complementarity of each individual to create a large-scale collective project, from the initial idea to the final work. Thanks to the BMW ART MAKERS programme, Mustapha Azeroual is able to experiment and create lenticular works on a scale never achieved. Marjolaine Lévy accompanies him as he scales up, designing a reinvented immersive space for each exhibition venue," said Maryse Bataillard, Head of Corporate Communications and CSR, BMW Group France.

Supporting the arts for more than 50 years, BMW is delighted to present ‘The Green Ray’ by Mustapha Azeroual and Marjolaine Lévy, artist-curator duo and winners of the BMW ART MAKERS, at the Cloister of Saint-Trophime, Arles.

Official partner of Les Rencontres d'Arles since 2010, BMW supports the festival’s influence, the dissemination of the art and contemporary creation. BMW France is providing a fleet of electric cars to transport VIPs and guests during the opening week.

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