The Elixirs of Panacea**
When contemporary artists question the secrets of alchemy

Palais Bénédictine in Fécamp May-October 2010

Matthew Day Jackson, Apollo Space Suit (after Beuys), 2008

* Elixir, originally from Arab origin, designates alternately or at the same time a liquid intended for the transmutation of metals (it is then a variant of the philosopher's stone), and a universal medicinal potion.
* Panacea (in ancient Greek Panákeia, from the root "pan", all, and "akos", remedy, meaning "the help") is a goddess who gives men remedies by plants.

On the occasion of the 500th anniversary of the invention of the original recipe for the famous beverage, the Benedictine Palace invites Ami Barak to design an exhibition in contemporary rooms and along the visit of the historical parts of the Museum.

An aura of mystery and magic hangs over the making and virtues of this liqueur, designed in the 19th century as an elixir of health by Alexander the Great following a recipe, still held secret today.
The exhibition, entitled The Elixirs of Panacea, presents from May 13 to October 17, 2010, protean approaches of contemporary international artists that evoke in many ways the concepts that preside over the alchemical mystery.

Guest artists work on the issues of materials processing, preciousness, quest for knowledge. Some artists borrow the rigor of the tools of scientific research or give shape to the transfiguration of materials, specific to the quest of the alchemist.

Everyday materials, or from the living world, gain more preciousness through ingenious transformations, the substitution of one material for a more noble one, or unexpected assemblies of objects. Other artists explore the confines of knowledge by imagining symbolic languages ​​and works as a metaphor for our knowledge of the finite world. Still others surround their works with mystery by creating inaccessible worlds whose secrets remain to be pierced by the spectator.

  • Davide Balula
  • Bertran Berrenger
  • Pascal Bircher
  • Michel Blazy
  • Nicolas Boulard
  • Don Brown
  • Mircea Cantor
  • Susan Collis
  • John Cornu
  • François Curlet
  • Matthew Day Jackson
  • Wim Delvoye
  • Detanico & Lain
  • Julien Discrit
  • Hubert Duprat
  • Eric Duyckaerts
  • Richard Fauguet
  • Marc Ganzglass
  • Shilpa Gupta
  • Ann Veronica Janssens
  • Yves Klein
  • Mathieu Lehanneur
  • Charles Lopez
  • Laurent Montaron
  • Jean-Michel Othoniel
  • Gyan Panchal
  • Philippe Ramette
  • Evariste Richer
  • Gabriela Vanga
  • Xavier Veilhan
  • Ulla Von Brandenburg
  • Raphael Zarka