The flip side of the sublime is the grotesque, and while the form is praised in artwork, materialism is considered vile. These twined oppositions are often the raw goods in which Scatology trades. Said in the vulgar, ‘toilet humor’ has been used as a literary trope to spin the pious on its head, and have it land, face first, on the altar of the absurd. During the eighth and last Causerie, writer and artist Alexandre Singh will explore these twists, and means, from the materiality of excremental studies, to the conception of the grotesque body.

Alexandre Singh will push out these ideas through theories of cultural sociology with David Inglis (Professor of Sociology at the University of Exeter) and the works of Sigmund Freud with Iki Freud (Psychoanalyst).

About the Causeries

Taking its title from the French verb causer – to converse or chat – the Causeries are set up as a series of discussions in which Alexandre Singh expands on his ambitious play The Humans’ key themes, ranging from cosmology and cosmogony to pictorial satire, dance, drama, and religion. Rather than discursive events in the well-known format of a conference or a symposium, the Causeries are conceived as informal conversations between the artist and an expert in a given field. It is not only the edification of the artist himself that is pivotal in this alternative kind of exchange, also the audience is offered an insight in the underlying themes of The Humans. The monthly Causeries are conceived by Defne Ayas and Alexandre Singh, and are organized in consultation with critic and writer Donatien Grau.

About The Humans

The Humans – with “creation” as its central theme – is an ambitious play that will evolve and change over a six-month period. Set before the creation of the Earth in a proto-world populated by spirits, gods, artisans and men of clay and plaster, The Humans is modeled after the ancient Greek plays of Aristophanes. Whilst the theatrical references are ancient, the satire is utterly modern: religion, morality and human hubris are all mocked with an irreverent and biting tone

Leading up to the final live presentation of his play, Singh will transform Witte de With’s second floor into a space; part artist’s studio, part script-room and display area; where visitors will be able to follow the development of the play. This on-site realization of the artwork allows the audience to gain a unique insight into the inner dynamics of artistic creation.

—Supported by

Institut Francais