Pharmacie is an installation constituted of 4 projection systems (one lantern with an hourglass, one with a mechanical clock, one with a falling water drop and one projecting the image of an agate stone) which Francisco Tropa will present for the first time at ART BASEL's ART UNLIMITED, a collaboration between Quadrado Azul, Gregor Podnar (Berlin) and Jocelyn Wolff (Paris).
A conglomeration of objects, engines, materials and shapes deliberately arranged on a dark table: at first glance Pharmacie could be seen as a sculptural piece. In the centre, over a small bronze stand, there are two coloured acrylic cubes, two beams of light and colour that project their shadows on the sidewalls intermittently. The title evokes Marcel Duchamp’s 1914 eponymous work Pharmacie.
The table and its elements are integral parts of an intriguing device composed of four lanterns, two of which are visible while the others stay hidden in the inferior face of the table along with optical apparatuses projecting images unto the same plane to create a palimpsest, a dance of light and shadow, forms and rhythms. A four-stroke cinema: a drop of water, an hourglass and a mechanical clock, three ways – from the ancient world to the modern era – to measure and represent the flow of time. The fourth image is the still shadow of an agate blade, a (photogenic) drawing inducing a visual and symbolic outline suggestive of the perspective of an inner gaze obtained from a primordial place, the cave.