After various experiences with painting, graphic design and screen-printing workshops, Clay Apenouvon (b. 1970, Lomé) left his homeland to establish himself in Paris (France). In Paris, Apenouvon came into contact with artists such as Claude Viallat (movement Support Surface) and Mounir Fatmi. He achieved his first artistic co-production “Africa en Yvelines” in Mante La Jolie with the designer and artist Jules Wokam. Art is a cure, a way to express, and it helps Clay to exorcise personal suffering from his past He explored the possibilities of various materials. He uses cardboards as a physical support and an artistic medium. In his mind, cardboard is the symbolic material to address the issue of packaging, a major subject of his thinking and his approach: packing things or vacuum packaging. In 2006, Clay Apenouvon had his own unexpected and remarkable performance at the opening of the FIAC Paris. Passing a small cardboard sign for an object containing a priceless work of art, he reroutes the attention of security personnel who became convinced that a work of art had been stolen right before their eyes. The simple packaging and cardboard containers were perceived as having the same value as the contents.
With a militant and engaged personality, Clay Apenouvon became interested in plastic. He created the concept “Plastic Attack” in 2010. Leveraging installation as the mode of presentation, “Plastic Attack” raises awareness of the harm and danger that plastic poses to the environment on a global scale. In these works, Apenouvon sought to express the concept of the “fatal beauty” of plastic. His insider/outsider position, allowed him a remarkable versatility to portray a foreseen disaster.
Apenouvon worked in Europe, Africa and the United States. He presented his recent installation, Film Noir de Lampedusa at the Foundation Blachere, Visibles / Invisibles, l’Afrique urbaine et ses marges, 2015.
Apenouvon lives and works in Aubervilliers (France) and Lomé (Togo).