The digital artist Léa Porré builds alternative worlds that transcend historical boundaries, detached from the binary notion of fact and fiction.
Jessica Lolonga Satchi | Ed. Juliet Rennie | 6 July 2021
Léa Porré (b. 1996) is a French-Belgian digital artist based in London, UK. Her practice is predominately research-led, focussing on the deconstruction and critical reading of the French Monarchy and the Middle Ages. Her preferred process is storytelling through 3D digital sculpting but, she engages in video-editing, traditional sculpting and graphic design amongst other media.
Léa Porré graduated from Central Saint Martins (2018) and the Royal College of Art (2021) in the Critical Practice MA programme.
Artist, Title work (yyyy) © Courtesy of the artist.
Did you know?
Aesthetically, Léa Porré’s CGI landscapes are influenced by video games, more prominently browser games of the early 2000s. She deliberately rejects the hyper-realistic rendering that is currently prevalent within Digital Art. Instead, Porré embraces the glitches, rigid movements and rendering accidents, allowing her to fabricate immersive worlds that incite nostalgia and imitate the games that sculpted her childhood and formative online experiences. Furthermore, references to the medieval game genre can be identified throughout Porré’s creations from Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed to Blizzard North’s Diablo series.
Oasis or Mirage? (2018)
Léa Porré, Oasis or Mirage (2018) © Courtesy of the artist.
Oasis or Mirage? challenges the West’s fetishisation of the desert landscape, originating from colonialism. It explores how industries utilise orientalist tropes to digitally fabricate a cliché for the consumption of western societies.
The initial idea stemmed from two deserts Porré encountered during her travels, the Mojave in California and the Negev in Israel. During her presentation at the HASH Award 2020, Porré admits to projecting fantastical ideals on the landscapes, viewing them as tranquil refuges isolated from modern civilisation, rather than complex locations with a history of terrorism, conflict and occupation for commercial industries.
Oasis or Mirage? was an artistic opportunity for Porré to investigate the impact of her colonial past on these foreign spaces. It’s a CGI digital landscape, encompassing the archetypes of the mediated Oasis, designed as a set to reveal its fragility and to flirt with the concept of reality and fiction.
Léa Porré, .Marr. (2021) © Courtesy of the artist.
.Maar. is a narrative-based video project recounting a geologist’s fictional encounter with Lac Pavin. Located in France, Lac Pavin is a meromictic lake situated in the crater of a dormant volcano. For centuries its depth was unfathomable, resulting in the emergence of myths and legends that included even the Devil.
Porré adopts this superstition surrounding Lac Pavin and creates a dark other-worldly experience that materialises as a digital excavation amalgamated with mythological fantasy.
Léa Porré, Dear One, Dear Dead: King LouiS (2020) © Courtesy of the artist & Virginia Bianchi Gallery.
Dear One, Dear Dead: King Louis (2020)
Dear One, Dear Dead is an interactive webpage that reimagines the historical decapitation of King Louis XVI in 1793 with a mythological approach by implementing the cyclical concept of the sacrificial king. Presented by Virginia Bianchi Gallery, the digital exhibition is to be navigated horizontally. A deliberate decision by Porré to replicate ancient scrolls and create an experience that disrupts the infinite vertical-scrolling used by the majority of social software. A fictionalised history, this piece is presented in three acts:
The first act illustrates the sacrifice of the King. Regicide is not explicitly shown however gifs and hidden elements attached to historical documents are placed throughout, providing context to assist spectators in visualising the scene. The second act depicts the celebratory feast – a table spread with the organs of the King. Act three illustrates the dissipation of his remains into the fields to fertilise crops, feeding the nation he once failed.
By the age of 25, Porré has been featured in numerous established publications globally from Ouest-France to Wall Street International.
2021 – Eternal Returns at The Wrong TV (Online)
2021 – Versaliae at Off Site Project (Online)
2020 – Dear One, Dear Dead at Virginia Bianchi Gallery (Online)
2019 – Historical Amnesia at Chateau de Lantheuil (Lantheuil, France)
2019 – Who Knows What Happened Her? at Placement Produit (Aubervilliers, France)
Group shows / Festivals
2021 – RCA2021 degree show from July 22-25th, at Cromwell Place, in London.
2021 – Stuck In A Timeloop at Cherri Harari (Online)
2021 – Dia Zero at Palacio de Aguas Corrientes (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
2021 – Les (Im)matteriaux at Galerie XY (Olomouc, Czech Republic)
2021 – 3º Rassegna Online Di Videoarte at Maratona di Visione (Online)
2020 – Malfeasance at Ugly Duck (London, UK)