Artist Xavier Roux was inspired to create the sixty-foot long sculpture by the poem written by Surrealist Robert Desnos in 1942. This touching piece consists of a giant ant symbolizing the trains transporting Jews and other nazi victims to concentration camps.
The Invisible Dog Factory and Xavier Roux are deeply committed to this exhibition. We have embarked in the adventure of assembling the material such as nylon balloons, foam boards, sound systems, etc. The next step is the installation of the creature. It is fabricated from four elements, which are attached to a steel structure. The Ant is made of four giant translucent nylon balloons attached to a ton and a half steel structure fabricated with the help of Juan Alfaro who worked with Louise Bourgeois on the making of her famous Spider. The hat is still on the design board and revealed at the Opening in January.
It seems that in hard times such as the present, it is crucial to have curiosity about our past. What brought us here? What do we have to adjust in our lifestyles in order to move forward in the future instead of letting history repeat itself? Having a huge history ourselves, and being an old factory, these are questions The Invisible Dog has always had a particular interest in. This shared curiosity made us a perfect match with “The Ant” because it is exactly the kind of thought process the piece provokes. Its roots house a sentimental story of a successful and talented poet named Robert Desnos.
Robert Desnos (1900-1945) was one of the primary poets and writers of the Surrealist movement in France between 1924-1930. He wrote, and collaboratively wrote, many works that have influenced the thought and processes of a number of artistic and literary fields through the twentieth century. Besides poetry, Desnos also wrote film texts and essays on film, novels, criticism, and manifestos. During World War Two he became a poet of the resistance, but was arrested by the Gestapo and spent the remainder of the war in some of the most notorious concentration camps. He died of Typhoid fever in 1945 as a result of this internment.
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They Talk about the Ant