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Jöel Andrianomearisoa



“The work arises from various manipulations that lead me to the final result. When I set up an installation, I do not imagine its finality. I know the elements that compose it, but in the intent I set them up I discover something else. And that is when the work makes sense.” Joël Andrianomearisoa 




1977, Born in Antananarivo, Madagascar, Living and working between Paris and Antananarivo and Magnat-l’Étrange. Joël Andrianomearisoa took his first steps as an artist in the mid-90s, when he was barely 18 years old. From the outset his work took form through performances that would earn him the cover of Revue Noire Madagascar in 1998. He explores many disciplines, from fashion to design, video to photography, scenography to architecture, installations to visual arts. This is likely where he draws his polyphonic work from, invading every part of his viewers' sensitive space. Andrianomearisoa's work encompasses different mediums and materials, seeking to give form to non-explicit, often abstract, narrations. His mixed-media approach - encompassing sculpture, installation, craft, textile, written word and collaboration - is informed by his Madagascan roots, itself a country of diverse cultural influences. 

“It is neither a painting, a sculpture nor an architectural assemblage ... It is an installation that has different elements that refer to architecture, painting and sculpture but also to love, desire, loss, despair, hope.” - J. A. 

As a part of this first pioneering wave of contemporary Malagasy artists, he also actively participated in the cultural and artistic development of his country (Fashion festival Manja in 1998, the Sanga dance festival in 2003, Photoana festival in 2005, personal project 30 and Presque - Songes in 2007 and 2011, Parlez-moi in 2016). He first trained at an art school in Madagascar and then rubbed shoulders with craftsmen, which put him in touch with many renowned international designers. His training took a decisive turn at the age of 20 in France when he began studying at the École spéciale d'architecture, in Paris. In 2005, he graduated as an architect, presenting a fully graphic and textile project, far from the classic architectural approach that his research director Odile Decq had recommended. 

In 2016, he received the Arco Madrid Audemars Piguet Prize. Throughout his career, his work has been shown on five continents, including many prestigious international cultural institutions such as the Maxxi in Roma (2018), the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin (2010), the Smithsonian in Washington (2015), the Centre Pompidou (2005) and Palais de Tokyo (2021) in Paris, the Zeitz Mocaa in Cape Town (2022), the Macaal in Marrakech (2022), among many others. Joël Andrianomearisoa also launched two public sculptures in Antananarivo in October 2021, supported by the Fonds Yavarhoussen. His work forms part of important international collections including the Smithsonian (Washington DC), The Studio Museum in Harlem (New York), the Collection Yavarhoussen (Antananarivo) , the Museum Sztuki (Lodz), Zeitz Mocaa (Cape Town), Macaal (Marrakech) and Fondation H (Paris & Antananarivo). 

He participated in different Biennials like Biennial de la Habana, Cairo Biennial, Dakar Biennial, Sydney Biennial. Due to the invention and maturity of his work, his international reputation as well as the unconditional support of his professional network, in 2019 Joël Andrianomearisoa was chosen to represent his country alongside curators Rina Ralay Ranaivo and Emmanuel Daydé in the 58th edition of La Biennale di Venezia International Exhibition, with its own pavilion for the first time in its history. Joël Andrianomearisoa is also the founder and artistic director of Hakanto Contemporary, a non-profit independent space for artists in Antananarivo, Madagascar,  supported by the Fonds Yavarhoussen.

Untitled, 2010 Courtesy: Primo Marella Gallery

Andrianomearisoa express his art in an infinite numbers of ways. Although fabric is consideredhi main choice, he he’s never let this become a comfort zone, expanding his artistic elaboration through the use of different materials, all chosen with a precise study and purpose. J. A. Is a poet of the material, the compositions with which he designs

and constructs his work are wisely studied is such a way as to be able to convey an emotion, a feeling, whether hopeful or dramatic, through the compositional arrangement of his creation.

“It is neither a painting, a sculpture nor an architectural assemblage, it is an installation that has different elements that refer to architecture, painting and sculpture but also to love, desire, loss, despair, hope.”

The material becomes the aesthetic medium of his creed, the composer of his ideas, the communicator of a subtle and suave message. Many of his work are driven by an aesthetic credo, something that is animated by elegance, refinement, but also by the power of a subtle communication, conveying the philosophical facets without externalising them immediately, but almost whispering softly and harmoniously to the viewer his allegory.

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