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Untitled (Castor #1)

Untitled (Castor #1), 2013 - Claire Fontaine


about this work

This vibrant image is based on a thermographic photograph of a train Filled with containers that are used for storage and transport of radioactive nuclear waste.

This image was taken by the environmental lobby group Greenpeace and shows heat emitting areas (red) from so-called Castor nuclear transport containers at the railway station in the French Normandy city of Valognes. The waste, which is very hot - 400 degrees Celsius - is fused into blocks of solid glass so it cannot leak. Each container holds 28 of these glass blocks with layers of shielding to stop gamma and neutron radiation escaping

The train was carrying waste with twice the radioactivity of the Chernobyl disaster, and transported this nuclear waste from Valognes (FR) to Gorleben (DE) in 2011.

about Claire Fontaine

°2004, Paris (FR)

Claire Fontaine is a Paris-based collective, founded in 2004. After lifting her name from a popular brand of school notebooks, Claire Fontaine declared herself a “readymade artist” and began to elaborate a version of neo-conceptual art that often looks like other people’s work. Working in neon, video, sculpture, painting and text, her practice can be described as an ongoing interrogation of the political impotence and the crisis of singularity that seem to define contemporary art today.

But if the artist herself is the subjective equivalent of a urinal or a Brillo box – as displaced, deprived of its use value, and exchangeable as the products she makes – there is always the possibility of what she calls the “human strike.” Claire Fontaine uses her freshness and youth to make herself a whatever-singularity and an existential terrorist in search of subjective emancipation. She grows up among the ruins of the notion of authorship, experimenting with collective protocols of production, détournements, and the production of various devices for the sharing of intellectual and private property.

(courtesy of Galerie Chantal Crousel)

Claire Fontaine has had numerous solo exhibitions at institutions such as The Jewish Museum, New York; CCA Wattis Institute, San Francisco; Frac Haute Normandie; FRAC Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur; Museion, Bolzano; MUSAC, Castilla y León; El Museo Tamayo, Mexico City; Aspen Art Museum; Witte de With, Rotterdam; Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis; and Schinkel Pavillon, Berlin.

Group shows include Centre Pompidou, Paris; Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt; KW, Berlin; MOCAD, Detroit; Paradise Row, London; IMO projects, Copenhagen; Musee d’art moderne de la Ville de Paris; Castello di Rivoli, Turin; and the biennales of Shanghai, Sydney, Rennes, Istanbul, Lyon, Moscow and Venice.

Claire Fontaine is represented by the following galleries;
click through to discover more of her work.

Galerie NEU, Berlin  

T239, Rome  

Regina Gallery, Moscow  

Reena Spaulings Fine Art, New York  

Learn more about this artist