Stephen Brandes

La Place des Grands Abysses

Stephen Brandes

Stephen Brandes

A superlative draughtsman who has exhibited internationally, Stephen Brandes explores the interplay of word and visual language as a vehicle for storytelling with particular reference to travel fiction, absurdism and satire. This exhibition at CCI is the culmination of ten years of research, observation and invention. A monumental, highly-detailed drawing combines with traditional collages and an animated slideshow to allow a multiplicity of readings. The main narrative takes us from the last few months of a certain Albert Sitzfleisch’s life in 2069, as he travels and starts writing a book on optimism, to his after-life as an unwitting tour-guide of the ruins of the Place des Vosges a century later. La Place des Grands Abysses offers both a meditation on the legacy of the Enlightenment and a speculative portrait of Europe.

Watch the conversation between Karl Whitney and Stephen Brandes, recorded on the night of the exhibition's opening: