Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Splendide Hotel

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Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Splendide Hotel
DOMINIQUE GONZALEZ-FOERSTER
SPLENDIDE HOTEL
MARCH 13 – AUGUST 31, 2014
MUSEO NACIONAL CENTRO DE ARTE REINA SOFÍA
PALACIO DE CRISTAL, PARQUE DEL RETIRO, MADRID
DOMINIQUE GONZALEZ-FOERSTER
SPLENDIDE HOTEL
Taking the date of construction of the Palacio de Cristal as point of departure, Dominique
Gonzalez-Foerster creates a complex, intuitive web of literary, cultural, musical, and
historical associations around books, objects, discoveries and their authors and
readers, around the year 1887—the year is peopled with birthdays, publishing dates
and moments of scientific discovery.
In the center of the Palacio de Crystal a room closely echoing the formal language of
the pavilion that surrounds it has been built. At first it might be mistaken for part of the
original structure, yet the space is enclosed and without a visible entrance. Visitors
can look in but not enter. Its floor is covered with wall-to-wall carpeting imprinted with
the pattern of Persian carpets imported to Europe in the 19th century (and shown in
pictures of the Palacio de Cristal from the time of its opening). Changing every few
days, one of four different objects is placed on the carpet, evoking the trace of an
absent inhabitant circa 1887: either a top hat, lace-up boots, a gramophone or an
orchid plant. The room stands in for the Hotel Splendide of the work’s title, or as the
artist described it in her notes “a stage or an aquarium, a literarium / it’s full of ghosts
and guests.”
Outside of this room, in the remaining space of the Palacio de Cristal, rocking chairs
are placed in irregular intervals. Re-editions of classic Thonet period furniture, the
chairs act as domestic objects and historical references at the same time. Each one
has a specially bound purple book tied to it that contains three individual volumes,
encouraging visitors to sit down and read. The list of books (see attached) includes,
among others, literature, science fiction and philosophy in German, English, French
and Spanish. An effort was made to have each volume in their original language and
when possible complemented by its English and Spanish translation.
The title, adapted from a line by Arthur Rimbaud, conflates a multitude of literary, cultural
and historical references. The rich web of associations creates an atmosphere that acts
as a link, or like a H.G. Wells time machine, to the 19th century, specifically to the year
1887, creating a fictional moment that appears to echo through time as representation
of an imaginary place and time
Installation view, Splendide Hotel
Neon Sign above the entrance
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
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Installation view, Splendide Hotel
View into the pavilion with carpet and
everyday-changing object
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
4
Installation view, Splendide Hotel
Views into the pavilion with carpet and
everyday-changing object
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
5
Installation view, Splendide Hotel
Views into the pavilion with carpet and
everyday-changing object
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
6
Installation view, Splendide Hotel
View into the pavilion with carpet and
everyday-changing object
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
7
Installation view, Splendide Hotel
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
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Installation view with rocking chairs and purple bound books
Splendide Hotel
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
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Opening
Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Splendide Hotel
Palacio de Cristal, Parque del Retiro
Museo Reina Sofía
2014
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BIBLIOGRAPHY
To each rocking chair a bound book was tied that
contained three volumes from the following list:
1. Beckett, Samuel, Murphy, Barcelona, Lumen, 2000
2. Beckett, Samuel, Murphy, London, Faber and Faber, 2009
3. Benjamin, Walter, Iluminaciones I, Madrid, Taurus, 1971
4. Benjamin, Walter, Tentativas sobre Brecht. Iluminaciones 3, Madrid, Taurus, 1987
5. Benjamin, Walter, Poesía y capitalismo. Iluminaciones II, Madrid, Taurus, 1991
6. Benjamin, Walter, Illuminationen. Ausgewählte Schriften 1,
Frankfurt, Suhrkamp, 2001
7. Bolaño, Roberto, 2666, London, Picador, 2009
8. Bolaño, Roberto, 2666, Barcelona, Anagrama, 2010
9. Capote, Truman, Otras voces, otros ámbitos, Barcelona, Anagrama, 2006
10. Capote, Truman, Other voices, other rooms, England, Penguin, 2004
11. Chéjov, Antón, Ivanov. La gaviota. Tío Ványa, Madrid, Alianza, 2013
12. Collordi, Carlo, Le aventure di Pinocchio,
Roma, Grandi Tascabili Economici Newton, 2012
13. Collodi, Carlo, Las aventuras de Pinocho, Great Britain, Plaza Editorial, 2013
14. Conrad, Joseph, La locura del Alayer, Madrid, Alianza, 2010
15. Conrad, Joseph, Almayer’s Folly: a Story of an Eastern River,
London, Pearl Necklace, 2013
16. Darío, Rubén, Azul…, Madrid, Edaf, 2003
17. De Maupassant, Guy, Le horla et autres récrits fantastiques,
Malesherbes, Pocket, 2013
18. Dostoieswski, Fedor, Memorias del subsuelo, Barcelona, Juventud, 2010
19. Dujardin, Edouard, Han cortado los laureles, Madrid, Alianza, 1973
20. Dujardin, Édouard, Les lauriers sont coupés, Paris, Flammarion, 2001
21. Gaddis, William, Agapé Agape, London, Penguin, 2003
22. Gaddis, William, Ágape se paga, Madrid, Sexto piso, 2008
23. Genet, Jean, Splendid’s suivi de Elle, Francia, Folio, 2010
24. Genet, Jean, Splendid’s, London, Faber Finds, 2009
25. Hudson, William Henry, A Crystal Age, Great Britain, 1807 (edición facsimilar)
26. Hudson, William Henry, La era de cristal, Barcelona, Minotauro, 2004
27. Huntington, Gladys, Madame Solario, Paris, Les Belles Lettres, 2013
28. Jouve, Jean-Pierre, Paulina 1880, Francia, Folio, 2011
29. Krzhizhanovsky, Sigizmund, The Letter Killers Club,
New York, The New York Review of Books, 2012
30. Maeterlinck, Maurice, Poesía completa,
Madrid, Fundación Carlos de Amberes, 2011
31. Matheson, Richard, Somewhere in Time, New York, Tor, 1998
32. Numa, Shozo, Yapoo, The Human Cattle. Vol 1, 2 y 3, Japón, 1999
33. Rimbaud, Arthur, Una temporada en el infierno e Iluminaciones,
Madrid, Alianza, 2011 (edición bilingüe castellano-francés).
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34. Rimbaud, Arthur, Una temporada en el infierno e Iluminaciones,
Madrid, Alianza, 2014 (edición bilingüe castellano-francés).
35. Rizal José, Noli Me Tángere, Madrid, Sempere y Compañía, s/f (edición facsimilar)
36. Rizal, José, Noli Me Tangere, Great Britain, BiblioBazaar, s/f
37. Roth, Joseph, Hotel Savoy, Barcelona, Acantilado, 2004
38. Roth, Joseph, Hotel Savoy, Zürich, Diogenes, 2010
39. Roussel, Raymond, Como escribí algunos libros míos, Barcelona, Tusquets, 1973
40. Roussel, Raymond, Comment j’ai écrit certains des mes libres, Mesnil-sur-l’Estrée,
Gallimard, 2010
41. Sebald, Winfried Georg, Austerlitz, Barcelona, Anagrama, 2013
42. Sebald, Winfried Georg, Austerlitz, Frankfurt, Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, 2013
43. Sorrentino, Gilbert, Splendide - Hôtel, Illinois, Dalkey Archive Press, 2001
44. Stevenson, Robert Louis, The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and
Other Tales of Terror, London, Penguin, 2003
45. Stevenson, Robert Louis, El doctor Jekyll y Míster Hyde, Valencia, Narrativa, 2014
46. Strindberg, August, A Madman’s Manifesto,
Alabama, The University of Alabama Press, 1971
47. Strindberg, August, Plaidoyer d’un Fou, Paris, Editions Sillage, 2013
48. Tchekhov, Anton, Ivanov, Great Britain, JiaHu Books, 2014
49. Vila-Matas, Enrique, Perder teorías, Barcelona, Seix Barral, 2010
50. Wells, H. G., The Time Machine, Leipzig, BookSurge Classics, 2002
51. Wells, H.G., La máquina del tiempo y otros relatos,
Madrid, El Club Diógenes, 2007
52. Woolf, Virginia, Orlando: biografía, Madrid, Alianza, 2012
53. Woolf, Virginia, Orlando, London, Wordsworth Classics, 2013
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PHOTOS BY
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