14 rue de l'École de Pharmacie, Montpellier

From septembre 26, 2020 to may 30, 2021

Opening friday septembre 25, 2020, from 4pm to 10pm 

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Deviance, performance, resistance.

Possessed is a multidisciplinary exhibition that brings together over 25 international artists. It explores the relationship between resistant or excluded bodies and esoterisms: a means to reappropriate and perform feminist, queer or decolonial identities.

Necromancy and spiritism, divination (astrology, fortune-telling, palmistry), magic and alchemy (spells, potions, elixirs) are among those gestures and rituals whose force springs forth from a body in movement. The occult only acquires meaning through performance. It is banished bodies that seize hold of such acts. The occult is the
science of deviant bodies. It is necessary to be excluded and, in return, to exclude oneself from social, religious or economic norms in order to become a witch or a voodoo priest, to converse with spirits and let oneself be carried away by them. In this sense, the occult sets itself up as resistance against dogma, patriarchy, dominant powers, religions, accepted knowledge systems: in other words, the majority. By its nature, it is that which is hidden and other. It is that which reveals.

Possessed brings together sculpture, video, painting, installation. It is further activated by performances that take place within an architectural scenography designed by Mr. & Mr., and a lighting design by Serge Damon, in which the visitor becomes the main actor of a quasi-cinematographic experience.

The exhibition once more allows MO.CO. to offer direct support to artists through the production of a large number of new works, in particular those of Montpellier-based artists Nicolas Aguirre, Jimmy Richer and Chloé Viton, as well as French and international artists, including Raphaël Barontini, Lewis Hammond, Jean-Baptiste Janisset, Paul Maheke, or Apolonia Sokol.

A full programme of performances, talks and screenings will complete the exhibition. Possessed has a particular resonance with the history of Montpellier, a city known for its history and tradition tied to the Faculty of Medicine, which in 2020 celebrates its 800th anniversary.


Artists of the exhibition :

Nicolas Aguirre, Kelly Akashi, Nils Alix-Tabeling, Jean-Marie Appriou, Raphaël Barontini, Sedrick Chisom, Pauline Curnier Jardin, Iain Forsyth et Jane Pollard, Laura Gozlan, Lewis Hammond, M. Mahdi Hamed Hassanzada, Anna Hulačová, Jean-Baptiste Janisset, Joachim Koester, Paul Maheke, Pierre Molinier, Myriam Mihindou, Nandipha Mntambo, Antonio Obá, Jimmy Richer, Apolonia Sokol,Chloé Viton, Dominique White.

And performances and off-site works by Pierre Huyghe, Latifa Laâbissi, Luara Learth Moreira, PEREZ.

Curators : 

Vincent Honoré, Director of Exhibitions MO.CO., with Caroline Chabrand, Curator MO.CO., and Anya Harrison, Curator MO.CO., assisted by Laureen Picaut, Intern MO.CO.


In partnership with :

Fluxus      logo trax

Catalogue Possédé.e.s

A richly illustrated, bilingual catalogue, published by Silvana Editoriale and designed by Atelier Tout va bien, brings together specially commissioned contextual essays and critical texts. An essay by Marianne Derrien adopts a transhistorical approach to discuss magic and expand upon the themes introduced by the exhibition. In addition, a plurality of voices offer a critical analysis of each artist’s work, with texts by Camille Bardin, Margaux Bonopera, Caroline Chabrand, Giulia Civardi, Thomas Conchou, Julie Crenn, Chris Cyrille, Cédric Fauq, Anya Harrison, Caroline Honorien, Eliel Jones, Ingrid Luquet-Gad, Flora Katz, Franklin Melendez, Pedro Morais, Laureen Picaut, Taddeo Reinhardt and Barbara Sirieix.

The bilingual catalogue will be available at boutique Sauramps of MO.CO. Hôtel des collections, at the opening of Possessed. Deviance, performance, resistance.

Couverture Possedees

Catalogue : Editions Silvana
Graphisme : Atelier Tout va bien
Bilingual english / french
240 pages
30 euros






Exhibition views

Dominique WHITE Ruttier for the Absent [Ruttier pour les absents], 2019
Dominique WHITE, Ruttier for the Absent, 2019. Courtesy de l’artiste et VEDA, Florence / Courtesy of the Artist and VEDA, Florence. Photo © Marc Domage

Nils ALIX-TABELING Table/eau alchimique ; “Le royaume de Satan était habilement divisé…” 3 chaises sympathiques (Chat-Mite-Sphinx), [Alchemic Table/eau: « The Realm of Satan was skillfully divided… » Three Sympathetic Chairs [(Cat-Moth-Sphinx)], 2020
Nils ALIX-TABELING, Alchemic Table/eau: « The Realm of Satan was skillfully divided… » Three Sympathetic Chairs (Cat-Moth-Sphinx), 2020.
Work produced by MO.CO. Montpellier Contemporain.Courtesy of the Artist. Photo © Marc Domage

Installation view Possédé.e.s
From left to right
Paul MAHEKE, From heaven, through the world, to hell, 2020
Work produced by MO.CO. Montpellier Contemporain. Courtesy of the Artist and Galerie Sultana
© Adagp, Paris, 2020.
Jean-Baptiste JANISSET, Smile to the Angels, 2020
Work produced by MO.CO. Montpellier Contemporain in collaboration with l’Atelier Chiffonnier, l’institut Fresnel, Vent des Fôrets, Southway Studio and with the support of Fonds de dotation Katapult. Courtesy of the Artist © Adagp, Paris, 2020.
Pierre MOLINIER, Introit, 1967.
Courtesy of Galerie 1900-2000 & Galerie Christophe Gaillard, Paris © Adagp, Paris, 2020.Photo © Marc Domage

Exposition MO.CO Panacée, du 26 septembre 2020 au 3 janvier 2021 Crédit photo : Marc Domage
Chloé VITON, Cosmic Soup, 2020
Work produced by MO.CO. Montpellier Contemporain. Courtesy of the Artist. Photo © Marc Domage