I spend a lot of time breathing. Overwhelmed by work.
4 p.m. I lie down on my bed, I don't sleep, my eyes stare at the ceiling. I let my thoughts drift through me.
My manuscript is looking for a publisher. Other words are taking up my time now. Time is what is needed, the time to write, the time to be read, the time to take it in.
The installations I created for Backslash reveal this time. Five spaces, five audio and visual installations illustrating the journey taken by the writing. Both past and present, it gives of itself on the outside.

The touchers

LUC: I close my eyes. My finger travels across the skin of my face.
One hand draws what the other touches.
The drawings are arranged symmetrically and placed against the wall. I look at them.
I don't know if they're good.
I don't know if they can exist without a text.
BACKSLASH: Hung like banners, various series of drawings present a succession of portraits. Each image shows a face. A voice speaks. The drawings have travelled through the artist's body and mind before ending up on paper.

Falling from the hands

LUC: The right hand is drawing the left hand.
The left hand is drawing the right hand.
Some people reject the text, other like it.
BACKSLASH: On the wall are drawn hands; between them lies empty space. The artist fingers the letters he receives. His voice traces the journey of the manuscript, from hand to hand, mouth to ear.

Maybe your task is to write it

LUC: I talk about my task, of saving the world.
"Maybe your task is to write it?" I work on a text all the time. I wake up in the middle of the night to change a word, obsessed with getting the balance of a sentence just right. I read this text, my hand writes what I read without my eyes looking at what is being written.
BACKSLASH: The manuscript unfolds across the wall and floor. An open book. The text occupies the biggest space in the gallery.

There are noises in the corridor

In collaboration with artistic duo Thérèse Verrat and Vincent Toussaint LUC: These words following on from each other, all these sentences, that's my skin.
I put bits of sellotape over my eyes.
I think about Thérèse. Has she been squirted in the eye by a chemical?
"What do you see?"
I open my eyes, the wall, the light, she squeezes my hand tight.
BACKSLASH: Luc talks about an abyss. Words are dangerous. He calls Thérèse. Vincent films their hands playing together. Photographic prints made by Thérèse and Vincent complete the process, the image takes over from the word.

Before disappearing

LUC: I crush the pen to make the ink come out.
I spread it across the first page of a notebook.
The stain has gone through different layers of paper.
Before disappearing. BACKSLASH: In the final exhibition room, stains go through layers of paper before they disappear. The ink is nothing more than a memory. How can a text exist if no one reads it? How can the page be turned?

Luc Schuhmacher studied at the national fine arts school in Paris, in Christian Boltanski and Claude Closky's studios. His work has featured in a variety of places, including at Mac Val and the 2006 Nuit Blanche all-night cultural event. 2006 was also the year he took part in a happening at the Grand Palais in Paris with Claude Closky. Following two solo exhibitions of his work in 2011 and 2015, Backslash is once again giving the gallery space over to him in autumn 2018.

All the installations are made up of a visual component (marker pen or ballpoint pen drawings, hand-written manuscript pages, video and photographic prints) and an audio mechanism, which the viewer can choose to activate. Each sound piece is also released as a disk.