An impressive barking dog, a family member who disappears, a pile of children’s shoes… The guest exhibition by the artist duo Perbal/Bélibaste “When are we going home?” looks at the war through the eyes of a child.
The two artists drew inspiration from a personal family story. Magali Perbal’s grandfather kept six Jewish people hidden in his home during World War II. The refugees and the grandfather were arrested and then deported. A tragic event that led to a complex family trauma.
The family story grew into a series of societal questions. What impact does war have on child development? What are the consequences of trauma in their subsequent lives? Can unprocessed war memories be passed on from one generation to the next? And above all, what can we as a society do about it? Through fragile sculptures made of wire, wood, metal, stone and natural materials, the duo Perbal/Bélibaste puts these questions and feelings at the center of their work.
The exhibition consists of three sections. The first section expresses emotions where words are inadequate, through a dozen sculptures of refined simplicity. Gradually, these works flow into a hopeful second section, dedicated to the processing of traumatic memories. The closing piece depicts the desire of a caring world where a child need not grow up with dark scratches on the soul, but is helped to be resilient and full of wonder in life again.
The expo “When are we going home?” runs from Thursday, Feb. 2, to Tuesday, May 2, 2023. On Sundays Feb. 5, March 5, March 26 and April 23 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., the artist duo will be present in the panorama room for additional explanations.