Herakles – a series by Fleur Helluin.
The Greek hero is not only about 12 Works.

In a less famous episode of his life, he is sold as a slave to Omphale, Queen of Lydia. During his long stay at her court, he lives dressed as a woman, working as a woman and suffering their fate. It is this Herakles that lives in Fleur Helluin’s works.

“In Diodore de Sicile, Omphale, queen of Lydia, buys Heracles as a slave who must expiate a murder. The lovers exchange their clothes, their attributes, and their roles : limped, perfumed, and dressed as a woman,  Héraclès « with his robust hand spins the soft wool » while Omphale adopts the club and the lion skin.” (Veronique Dagen)

This episode is linked by Fernando Wulff Alonso to the Mahābhārata (the exile of Pāṇḍava).

Altogether hero with an unmatched strength and character pushed around by the forces of Fate, Herakles personifies a new and mangled entity. His appearance, his fate, his relation to gender are all bases of reflection on contemporary themes : the gendered life, strength, confusion. An opportunity for a contemporary visitation and a visual crackling.

It is Fleur Helluin’s third solo exhibition at the AKA Gallery, after Cyberspace and Golden Age in 2013, and The Zeroth Law in 2017. They all explored contemporary duality and paradoxes : how to be in and out of the world, balancing between states of being. Fleur Helluin studied under the direction of Gilian Gelzer and Joel Hubaut in Caen, France, and Norbert Bisky in Salzburg, Austria. She was also part of the academic program Art & Technology of the Image in University Paris 8.


Since 2004, her work explores the impact of the screen-based culture on contemporary figure. Her representational works incorporate the rich features linked to the use of the screen (light, posture, online vocabulary) to traditional oil painting. Through the representation of the contemporary figure, she sheds a new light on the paradoxal mechanisms of the perception of ourselves and the world, engaging strongly with the present.

With her Herakles Series, made with egg tempera, gouache and oils marks a new turn in her practice, towards a freed figuration. Her practice is focused on painting, and incorporates performance, installation and sound experiments. Her works have been shown with Bill Viola, Norbert Bisky, Damien Cadio, or Cécile Wesolowski.

Since 2006, she lives between Berlin, Germany and Normandy, France.











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