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"Learning from Aping” certainly seems to occupy a special place in my work as a whole, you could compare it with what Deleuze describes as the advantage of being a stranger within one's own language. But this series of works is not fundamentally different from the rest of my practice, even if I have to admit that in this case I am granting myself greater freedoms because my sphere of activity, one could call it a pretext, lends itself so wonderfully to experimentation. The project consists of extensive documentation - I am compiling a library specialised in monkeys, and collecting articles and objects from everyday culture - and also a very free interpretation of all these phenomena from a point of view that sometimes verges on the pseudoscientific or even pseudo artistic. The fact that I see myself in Magritte's cow period as much as in amateur art is something I put down to my impartiality towards all forms of artistic expression. "Learning from Aping” offers wonderful possibilities for play, even my own artistic autonomy/authorship is thrown into question. Sometimes I feel like a character that I have invented myself. This is the role I also play in the film that is currently being made about this research.
I often ask myself how I position myself as an artist, but there's no way I could say. I ape art, I think, if not deliberately. I can't seem to do anything else.
From an interview with Tiphanie Blanc and Yann Chateigné


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Guillaume Pilet