Poolside Pastoral, 2019
A site-specific choreography for the indoor pool and grotto of the Vieux Chalet imagined as the slow unfurling of a pastoral poem and the fourth work in an ongoing series of Lewis’ exploration of feminist sociologist Roslyn Bologh’s concept of ‘erotic sociability’. Situated in the former home of international playboy Gunter Sachs, Lewis revives the spirit of its storied past with her own indulgences in a sensuous performance that is part fantasy, part reverie where nude figures move in daylight meeting and inviting the gaze of the public without divesting themselves of their subjecthood. Lewis twists the affect of nostalgia in the pastoral mode toward generating a sense of longing for a different future, a future in which the notion of the individual has dissolved into the relational, a future of receptivity, sociability, and collaboration rather than one of competition, conflict, and coercion. Set against the painted landscape on the walls of pool area the work evokes
tropes of idyllic human relations with the natural world as a springboard into more complex and nuanced ruminations on the possibility of some kind of attunement with our planetary oikos, an attempt at generating a more salient sense of living with, dying with and being at home with our ecosystem as a whole.
Poolside our capacities can expand and flourish in ways that are denied to them elsewhere. The public is welcome to watch the performance unfold from different vantage points around the pool or from within the pool itself.
Poolside Pastoral features Lara Dâmaso, Isabel Lewis, Sacha Molnar, Natascha Moschini, Larbi Namouchi, Rafał Pierzyński, Mathias Ringgenberg, Donia Sbika, Simone Truong and Teresa Vittucci.