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Dominique Gilliot 

A Handle, an Object,
and Several Dismissed Ideas

NOVEMBER 1-15, 2013
Reception: Wed. Nov. 6, 6-8 pm

Proxy Gallery is pleased to present the solo exhibition A Handle, an Object, and Several Dismissed Ideas by artist Dominique Gilliot.

In a pre-installation performance, Gilliot presented the Proxy Gallery with a suitcase handle that she had attached to one of its sides. She then comedically announced that she was going to put her “soul” inside the Proxy gallery, and proceeded to inflate a red balloon so that it became completely wedged inside the gallery. The action was quite literally an INSPIRATION, (from the Latin inspirare = to breathe into.) Finally she read aloud the 16 ideas that she rejected before finally choosing the balloon. The dismissed ideas were distributed to the audience, then placed next to the Proxy gallery in lieu of an artist’s statement.


The list of dismissed ideas have a constantly destabilizing function that causes the viewer/reader to question the validity of the final chosen idea as indeed the best. By making herself vulnerable in this way, Gilliot offers a revelation of pre-production process and exposes her own experience in writing the grant and exhibition proposals which her practice depends on for its survival. What is really being exhibited is air, breath, inspiration, as well as the cognitive and emotional process of art production with all its pathos. The balloon, like the ego of the artist, is subject to slow deflation, and during the run of the exhibition Gilliot plans to replace it with either other balloons or other objects, as a way of both revitalizing the work and subverting its uniqueness.

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