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Out of the ordinary

Frederic Pollet awaits your interpretation of his unusual works


IF YOU love seeing somebody spit for 16 minutes, this one's for you. Frederic Pollet, a French photographer, has made spitting quite an art form. From the style one pulls the phlegm out, to its collection in the mouth, and then its subsequent expulsion - `Spit it out' is a frame-by-frame film tastefully made on a rather distasteful subject. If you cannot suffer it, you can always sit back and enjoy the next video, on sex.

As you go over it, you will certainly think of Pollet as some incurable artist who is bizarrely weird yet profoundly wonderful. His works are on display at the Alliance Francaise till September 28 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. In case we have induced curiosity in you, it will be handy to note the short films are just a part of the exhibition, which is his photographs - about 19 of them. Strange as usual these photographs - part of a series - "Colours of Silence", are of individual men and women who simply stare at you with a disturbing silence.

These inert men and women seem to express more than a few things through their stillness, some with fingers on their lips - with distorted colours slapped on their lips and hands, and others simply looking intently at the viewer. Even the colours used have been muted methodically to produce an effect - at times eerie, else natural.

"The artist has made his pictures open for any kind of interpretation," says Alliance Francaise director, Dr. Mathieu Guerin adding, "I haven't seen anything like this ever before."

A graduate from Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts, Paris, Pollet can only be understood at different levels by a diversity of interpretation, or not at all. It seems the artist, who has displayed his works worldwide, has developed a unique style combining all the techniques of art from painting to video, from photography to sculpture and sometimes, he even gives live performances at the venue of his exhibition.

It is unfortunate Pollet couldn't make it to Hyderabad this time, - maybe we could have heard silence speak.

SOUVIK CHOWDHURY

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