Micro-Event n°42 /Weddings in the Summer Garden

Situation(s) [48°47 34 N / 2°23 14 E], commissaire Frank Lamy, MAC/VAL - Musée d'art Contemporain du Val-de-Marne, 2012

The accumulation of weddings mirrors the phenomenon of overconsumption in our society. It evokes a critique of the institution as well as the weight of social conventions.
But it is also a way to demystify this symbolic act and to render it banal.

With this performance of “Weddings”, I offered participants an experience of mutual consent. Though the act lasted five minutes, it was a genuine, lived moment. It was not a parodical gesture but five minutes of sincerity. The ritual that I constructed allowed the creation of a rhizome and an invitation to form a big family. Thus, without the notion of possession – we are always free. I am open to marrying persons with different genders, identities and sexual orientations.

After each wedding, I was photographed with each of my wives and husbands and the photos were then placed in an old-fashion, golden frame. The choices I made in conceiving the performance – for example the wedding dress bought at a popular shop called Tati (wedding dress of all brides) – participate in the kitsch esthetics that I underlined: popular esthetics as opposed to High Art.

At MAC/VAL, the photographs were taken at the edge of the garden pond and the time to walk between the altar and the photography point became a privileged moment to establish a place, an intimate moment during which I talked with my spouses: a space of contact, of encounter. Today I have more than 200 husbands and wives. With this series of Micro-Events that I have continued to develop and perform over the last 10 years, I attempt to redefine and transform this archaic social pact, which still stirs debate even today.