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Tactile Repetition

London, UK

Ruinart and Eva Jospin launch an immersive cardboard installation at Frieze London 2023

What do champagne and cardboard have in common?

Artist Eva Jospin, recently commissioned by Maison Ruinart for its annual Carte Blanche,  has created PROMENADE(S) – an immersive series of artworks made of the humble material, some of which were displayed last week at Frieze London in the Ruinart Art Bar.

Jospin’s installation is formed of a collection of chefs-d’œuvre, hauts-reliefs, drawings and embroideries – each articulated around a frieze drawn on paper, or ‘Carmontelle’ – invented in the 18th century when Maison Ruinart was born.

The artist conceived of the series when, upon assignment, she visited the Champagne region in northern France and experienced the terroir of the oldest champagne house in the world, which appeared to her as a composition of varied geological and temporal strata, real and imaginary.

“Through my artwork, I want the viewer to feel like the aesthete wondering around the Champagne region through the ages, discovering the links between what is below and what lies above, and plunging into the region’s fascinating story, with its intertwining cycles of history and nature, life and creation,” Jospin explains.

Introducing the notions of detail, meticulousness, fragility,  and mystery – all characteristics of the art of winemaking – Eva reproduced the complex layers of the Montagne de Reims site, where Maison 1729 is located.

From the legendary Crayères chalk quarries, now converted into wine cellars, to the roots and interlacing vines, and Reims Cathedral, where Kings of France were once coronated: the artist captures it all, cutting, layering, and filing her signature cardboard.

In her studio, as in the vineyards and cellars of Ruinart, the manual dimension is manifested by the repetition of precise gestures, at times tedious, but nonetheless essential.

To round off the partnership, the artist designed a limited edition encasement for a jeroboam of Blanc de Blancs, Ruinart’s cuvéetransforming the wooden box containing the bottle with a miniature chalk form sculpted in layers of cardboard.

“To me, cardboard is freedom. It gives me endless possibilities to experiment, create, discard, change,” explains Jospin.  It also embodies Ruinart’s commitment to sustainability and serves as a reminder of creative potential.