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Overview

Stairs, ladders and lifts are the motifs of Thomas Demand's latest monograph, L'Esprit d'Escalier, which is published on the occasion of his show at the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin. The title actually refers to so-called "staircase wit," that concise French expression for the chagrin of missed retorts—those hapless comebacks one only ever thinks up belatedly (i.e. when already descending the stairs): "I should've said (fill in blank)!" etc. One of Demand's ironic allusions to his title is a new work titled "Landing," which shows the shards of broken Qing vases on a staircase—a mishap caused by a visitor to The Fitzwilliam Museum Cambridge in January 2006, who stumbled on his shoelaces and crashed into the three eighteenth-century vases, smashing them to pieces. As ever, Demand combines conceptual rigor and exacting craft in his painstakingly re-created sets, with their eerie edge of artifice. L'Esprit d'Escalier presents an overview of his current work in 23 large photographs, plus a film project and an architectural installation specially prepared for his Irish Museum exhibition. Alongside an excerpt from David Foster Wallace's Girl with Curious Hair, it also includes commissioned writings by Dave Eggers, Paul Oliver, Caoimhín Mac Giolla Leith, Rachael Thomas and Enrique Juncosa.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9783865602107
Publisher: Walther Konig, Koln
Publication date: 07/01/2007
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 9.50(w) x 6.75(h) x (d)

About the Author

Thomas Demand was born in Munich in 1964. He studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Kunste, Munich, the Kunstakademie Dusseldorf, the Cite des Arts, Paris, and Goldsmiths College, London. His work has been widely exhibited and is represented in major museum and private collections throughout the world.

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