Exhibition views of “Dauphins, Dauphines”, 2020

Photos © Aurélien Mole

Dauphins, Dauphines

Charlotte Khouri’s exhibition

25 Jan. — 18 Jul. 2020

  • Curating:Marc Bembekoff
  • Opening:24 Jan. 2020

Play on language, architectural odds and ends, everyday actions, wigs and assorted other props all intermingle smoothly in the performatory, cinematic and sculptural practice of Charlotte Khouri (b. 1985, lives and works in Paris). In turn TV continuity announcer, therapist for artworks and impersonator second to none, she just loves undercutting our preconceptions with sensory twists and turns and unexpected perceptual insights. Result: a subtle balancing act that has the semantic and the visual simultaneously complementing and contradicting each other.


For her first solo exhibition, Charlotte Khouri has used her new film as the basis for an immersive installation that merges with the art centre space. “Dauphins, Dauphines” takes its inspiration from a French children’s game in which one player throws an object in the air and calls the name of another player who has to catch the object before it falls to the ground. This type of vertical, rising/falling geometry outlines the artist’s relationship with history and its heritage.

The film Nuit majeure was made during the artist’s residency at Noisy-le-Sec. As the exhibition’s pivotal point it brings a fresh perspective to the corporate and human resources aspects of the service sector and to the symbolic side of a certain “French” identity. The sets, with their motifs inspired by architectural details from La Galerie’s urban environment, stretch-fabric uniforms aping the executive’s three-piece suit, and props embodying an inverted scale of value, are designed by Charlotte Khouri as ideal media for speech and performance. Characters–a mistress of ceremonies, a diva, a choir–are immersed in a half-light that throws them into relief: sometimes sung, sometimes whispered, their words sabotage sacrosanct power structures and situate them in a meandering representational system including historical figures like Napoleon and François Mitterrand, and such nationally emblematic gastronomic items as English jelly and French brioche.


The exhibition space is orchestrated by furnishings formally reminiscent of landmarks both local–Noisy-le-Sec’s city hall, the tax office, La Galerie–and national: a bed-head shaped like the Arc de Triomphe, for example, and a dressing table with “Jardin à la française” motifs. Visitors are invited to stroll through a setting operatically rich in detail and at the same time mischievously ironic.

Around the exhibition

Saturday 29 February 2020, 3:30pm – 7pm


3:30pm: Talk about the reverse world of carnival by Blodwenn Mauffret

5pm: Le tarot des couleurs, divinatory performance by Charlotte Khouri around carnival pastries
Disguises welcome!


Thursday 12 March 2020, 6:30pm 8pm

“Une histoire des marges”

Talk by Marc Bembekoff, La Galerie director

Médiathèque Roger Gouhier

3 rue Jean Jaurès

F-93130 Noisy-le-Sec

+33 (0)1 83 74 57 61


Thursday 19 March 2020, 6:30pm – 8pm (canceled)

Digital art workshop for all

Médiathèque Roger Gouhier

3 rue Jean Jaurès

F-93130 Noisy-le-Sec

+33 (0)1 83 74 57 61


Saturday 21 March 2020, 2:30pm – 6:30pm (canceled)

“Épater La Galerie”

2:30pm: Talk-workshop on baking brioches with artist Élise Carron*

Micro-Folie Noisy-le-Sec

53 rue de Merlan

F-93130 Noisy-le-Sec

+33 (0)1 49 42 67 19

3:30pm: Walk tour with the association Noisy-le-Sec Histoire(s)

Departure from Place du Moulin Fondu

5pm 6:30pm: Tea time and English humour at La Galerie


*The talk-workshop by Élise Carron could not take place, it was replaced by a confined brioches baking tutorial: Le mystère de la brioche

Creative Saturdays (6-12 years)

Each Saturday, 2:30pm 4pm (except for school holidays) 

Free workshops, by registration: lagalerie.publics@noisylesec.fr


With artist Céline Drouin Laroche, participants explore a number of visual techniques connected to the exhibition.


More information on the Creative Saturdays

Educational workshops (schools, extracurricular activities)

“1, 2, 3 Prunelles” sessions (2×90 minutes + an excursion)


  • “Jouer le jeu” with artist Anna Ternon: writing of an imaginary story based on an established protocol, followed by a presentation to the class.


  • “Opéra noiséen” with artist Céline Drouin Laroche: creation of small, filmed opera based on the song Balance ton quoi by Angèle.


Discovery sessions (2h)


  • “Double face” with artist Anna Ternon: decoration of a screen, playing with its two sides that can be turned towards the private or towards the publics.


  • “Dégustation d’humour anglais” with artist Céline Drouin Laroche: making and tasting of a typically British jelly dessert.


  • “Le grand livre de gestes des futur·e·s travailleur·se·s” with artist Céline Drouin Laroche: a reflection on the gestures and behaviours of workers, photographed and immortalised in Le grand livre de gestes d’hypothétiques futur·e·s travailleur·se·s.


  • “Le décor des espaces de travail” with artist Céline Drouin Laroche: creation of a future workspace, making models and miniature sets.


  • “Le tarot des formes” with artist Anna Ternon: invention of a game of tarot from forms found in the exhibition “Dauphins, Dauphines”. 


  • “Le tarot des couleurs énergies” with artist Céline Drouin Laroche: using of watercolour to create an energy card with colours from the exhibition “Dauphins, Dauphines”. 


More information on the educational workshops

“Parcours croisés” with Théâtre des Bergeries
  • “Imagine un caillou” project
  • Conceived by Anna Ternon (artist, La Galerie)
  • Audience: two CE1 classes from école Arthur Rimbaud
  • Duration: 3×90 minutes


Pupils write a story based on a situation chosen by the artist: “the main characters, the rocks, all find themselves in a ruined city.” Then they design the sets and titles for a video.


The workshop is connected to the play En attendant le Petit Poucet by Compagnie Pour Ainsi Dire (scheduled at the Théâtre des Bergeries in March 2020), as well as a visit of the exhibition “Dauphins, Dauphines”.


Project cancelled because of Covid-19


More information on the “Parcours croisés” projects

More information

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