SPECTRUM, #1 film & 16 bamboos, 2022

Performing in front a film

At the crossroads of dance, in situ performance and architecture, Spectrum is inspired by the work of Alain Bublex, one of the most singular French visual artists of his generation, born in Lyon in 1961 and a former industrial designer at Renault. From the first Rambo film – First Blood – released in 1982, Bublex retained only the landscape to create An American Landscape, an animated film with a powerful soundtrack. Gone are Sylvester Stallone and all human presences. Transforming our gaze of the original version, Alain Bublex reveals new spectres and plunges us into the mental space of the absent main character. In the camouflage of the vector drawings and the greens of the American landscape, echoing the piece Sinople presented outside the exhibition space, the film is activated in front of the screen by a performance that will dislocate the certainties, play with the original narrative and with the device of all dimensions.

Spectrum, a wink to Barthes

In La Chambre claire (1980), Roland Barthes chose the word “spectrum” to underline the relationship between photography and show. It is the target, the referent of a photograph: an object or a human being. The person photographed is at the same time the one s.he believes himself to be, the one s.he would like to be believed, the one the photographer believes him.her to be, the one s.he uses to exhibit his.her art. The intersection of these four imaginaries provokes a feeling of inauthenticity, like that generated by the absence of the film’s protagonists, which sends the viewer / Spectator back to his or her function as a target.

Dramaturgy and geometry

The cubic bamboo structure refers to the original house at the beginning of the film, to the screen’s format but also to the regular Platonic polyhedron symbolizing the earth, and the aspiration to psychic stability of the character, calming his trauma from the return of the Vietnam war. Evoking also the prison in the scene of the police station, the edges of the cube, once deconstructed, return to their natural materiality on the ground of the forest. They become in turn elements of a footbridge, trunks, crosses of a Calvary, helicopter propellers loved by Bublex and present in the soundtrack, walking sticks… Some of them end up in a tetrahedron to evoke the protagonist’s new refuge space around the fire. The deconstruction is further amplified during the final scene of the return to the city, when the beam of martial weapons make the space bursting in a leaping dance with javelins landing off-screen, until the imaginary space in the background. Like the virtual green lights flashing on the canvas, only a few real green spotlights flashing in the night remain on the stage, and the empty teepee, questioning what is to come.


Concept, choreography and performance : Gilles Viandier / Direction and drawings of An American Landscape : Alain Bublex / Editing : Cyprien Nozieres / Music : Denis Vautrin / Production : Théâtre de l’Odyssée, Scène conventionnée Art et Création à Périgueux & festival Mimos – Agence culturelle départementale Dordogne-Périgord – P / O Galerie Georges-Philippe et Nathalie Vallois – Association Promenade d’artiste / Photos : Line Muckenstürm.