Vik Muniz X Ruinart ‘Shared Roots’ Exhibition At Frieze London To Present An Ode To The Creative Powers Of Nature And Mankind

Ruinart, the Official Champagne of Frieze and patron of contemporary art, is to exhibit its 2019 Carte Blanche Commission entitled ‘Shared Roots’ by Brazilian Artist Vik Muniz at the Ruinart Art Bar, Frieze London from 3-6 October.

Founded in 1729, Maison Ruinart is the very first established champagne house. Since then, it has never stopped developing and promoting its own art de vivre. Ruinart expresses its commitment to art by commissioning artists, starting in 1896 when Alphonse Mucha created the Maison’s first artwork.

Since 2008, Ruinart has commissioned some of the world’s finest contemporary artists and designers, giving them carte blanche during their residencies in Reims to pay tribute to its cuvées, its history, its heritage and its crayères: the impressive chalk cellars that are listed as an Unesco World Heritage Site.

In 2019, the Brazilian artist Vik Muniz was chosen to deliver his vision of the terroir and the savoir-faire that the Maison is rooted in. During his art residency during theharvest and in October 2018, Vik Muniz spent many hours in Sillery, a long-standing vineyard belonging to Maison Ruinart and one of the northernmost in Europe situated on the Montagne de Reims, working alongside Frédéric Panaïotis, Cellar Master at Ruinart. Fascinated by nature, he asked Frédéric about the vineyard and was surprised to learn that the Champagne region has a harsh climate that would seem unsuitable for growing crops.  However, this adversity actually brings out the best in the vine. Just like a survival reflex, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir produce their best fruit under difficult conditions.

Inspired by the deep relationships between humans and nature, winegrowers and vines, Ruinart and the Champagne terroir, and the creative tension that transforms adversity into wonder, Muniz celebrates Ruinart’s winemakers and its vineyards, which together, face challenging natural conditions each season. The resulting six-part ‘Shared Roots’ series features photographs of Vik Muniz’s creative use of organic elements, such as pieces of blackened vine wood, charcoal and chardonnay leaves, to produce representations of these challenges of nature, which in turn play with the viewer’s senses and perception of scale.


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