VENUS – by Alex Lawicka Cuper & Alain Lapicoré

Ah! Botticelli, if you were there!

The installation refers to the worldwide famous painting „The Birth of Venus” of Sandro Botticelli.

In the background you can see „aquarium” (2m of height, 3m of length, 0.25m of width) with two glass windows,  filled with blue liquid. There are colorful plastic bags floating in the fluid. In its left bottom corner, a pump moves its content. In the foreground, before the aquarium, Aphrodite made of translucent plexiglass or resin, emerges from a shell-like form (made from recovered plastic waste, mostly bags) The sculpture has a modern shape. The foundation (3m of length, 1.8 m of width and from 0.3m to 0.5m of height) is covered with grey pellets with sea anemones and corals printed on 3D printer from colorful plastic. I suggest to sell these small sea organisms to visitors and to donate money to the organisations that are fighting for the purity of the sea and oceans. Kinetic and acoustic effects (including whale song and the sound of waves) are generated by presence and motion sensors.

The mechanism is located in the aquarium.

Interactions with the public:

We have chosen two targets: teachers and the marketing industry.

1/         We plan to motivate teachers to come to their classes and visit us during the exhibition.

Elements needed 1- a one/two pages file explaining: the problem /our action 2- a kind of multi-answer questionnaire about sea/wastes/plastic/pollution/… allowing children to play and learn during their visit. We are ready to animate with their teachers a time of exchange and awareness with pupils.

A gift (we produce them) will be given to every child as a remembering of what they should do in their dayly life to contribute to “save the sea”.

Note: We are used to animating participative workshops with children, pupils and even adults.

2/         The marketing industry is at the origin of large packages we buy with only a small product inside; it is often responsible of the useless plastic materials which finish in the sea. We could participate to one of their international symposiums and present our artworks in the lobby of the meeting; one other option, softer and lighter, would be to present a large poster of artworks and distribute oral and paper messages to participants.

About locations.

We think that the exhibition should also come to two French sites:

In the North, Dunkerque, the largest harbour of France. We think the FRAC Nord – Pas de Calais should be interested to propagate our message.

In the South, Marseille. This lively and cosmopolitan harbour nests the MUCEM museum which addresses socio/cultural/ society exhibitions related to countries who share the Mediterranean Sea and their common concerns.

No contact has been taken at that time with either sites or possible symposiums.

We may not go further ahead before discussion/exchange with the organisation staff.

Relation to “The Universal Sea – Pure or Plastic!?

The masterpiece of Botticelli, “The birth of Venus”, is amongst the most famous painting in the world; that painting appears as an unprecedented event in Europe since classical antiquity. Renaissance marks the beginning of a new European culture based on the blending of Greek philosophy with Christianity values; artists at that time rediscovered the concept of antic ideal beauty, to illustrate that love and spiritual beauty are the driving forces of life.

What’s about these values compared to our future if we let the market forces and the resulting pollution taking the power over our lives? Over the air, we breathe? The water we drink? The sea we emerged from millions of years ago?

This campaign “the Universal Sea: Pure or Plastic?” puts us, artists, in the situation to awake, to shake our neighbours, ourselves, to consider that a return to love and beauty in our lives needs many changes symbolized by a sustainable Sea. To the contrary of Renaissance which marks the end of a dark period, today we face a very dark period, a regression, for the whole Humanity if we don’t change towards a sustainable future.

Ah! Botticelli, if you were there!

Aleksandra Lawicka-Cuper Polish architect, visual artist, sculptor. Born in Poland.  Lives and works

near Warsaw. Graduated in Architecture from Warsaw University of Technology in 1986

and of the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw in 1990. Abstract, minimalist works in stone, bronze, wood and ceramic; graphics: also art installations in nature and public space.

Since 2013 with Alain Lapicoré form the artist AL² Collectif, for land art, installations and exhibitions.


Alain Lapicoré: French. sculptor, land artist and photographer. Artistic studies at Braine l’Alleud Art School (Belgium). Degree in 2005. Creation during travels in mountains, deserts, islands.

Works on installations from Sisteron (Provence) and Waterloo (Belgium). 

AL² Collectif: some artworks in Arles, Millau, the Venetian arsenal, Monaco…

Our site:  landart-alex-alain