Projects (1984 – 2009) – Stellest

tête projet

When it was announced that the City of Los Angeles was to host the 1984 Olympic Games, Stellest created a comity constituted by American and European artists; a group of scientists working for NASA among whom the Professor Claude Michaux; and a few other enlightened spirits. Their goal: contribute to the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games with a show combining all at once music, the media, science, theatre and fine arts.

The comity then imagined a show of an incredibly advanced technical level; through a show telling the story of the Olympic Games, starting with ancient Greece, moving on to the institutionalization of the games by the Baron Pierre de Coubertin, and proposing a projection into the future with a representation of the Olympic Games in Space such as the NASA Engineers could conceive them at that time.

They imagine using twenty one screens placed around the Olympic stadium in order to broadcast images contributing to the show; back when nobody had ever used wide screens, not even in concerts. The project, followed with much interest by the Olympic Games Organization Committee of the City of Los Angels was baptised ‘The Equinoxe Project’. The technical resources then hard to find in a relatively short time for such an event –two years- eventually discouraged the City Committee after long consideration.

The Equinoxe Project sadly never took place…

Collaboration with Ulrich Zieger

At the beginning of the 90s, shortly after the Berlin Wall was destroyed, Stellest meets the German poet Ulrich Zieger. It won’t be very long before the two artists sympathize and start a collaboration that will give birth to two books.

In 1992, Ulrich Zieger writes ‘Grosse Beruhigte Körper’, illustrated by Stellest. With this book, Ulrich Zieger will win the first prize for poetry in united Germany. Shortly after that, in 1994, the book ‘Schwartzland’ is published, also illustrated by Stellest’s cosmic drawings.

Both these books were published by the Druckhaus Galrev, a renowned publishing house in East Germany. It will be discovered only later, when the soviet archive will be declassified, that members of the company belonged to the Stasi (political police), and that the publishing house was in fact co-financed by the Stasi. This discovery will provoke a major scandal in the German cultural world, but everything will get back in order at the end of the nineties.

Democracy, at last!

Die Welt, February 2nd 1992

‘They sang to the moon old songs.’

Ulrich Zieger was born in 1961, in Döblen, and grew up in Magdeburg before moving to Prenzlauer Berg. As the RDA is living its final months, he writes the poetry book ‘nineteen sixty-five’. The theme is the resurrection of a four years old child having found death with his mother. The child is in fact one of Ulrich’s childhood playmates. The poet publishes his second book in Montpellier, France, where he now lives (He left the RDA a few months before the wall came down). That second poetry book, called ‘The suspicious glory of three poets’, deals with the constant fear of being noticed in a state watched by the Stasi, the terrible political police of the RDA.

The two books are among the best of what German contemporary literature has to offer. They have been noticed by ARENA, but most libraries don’t diffuse them.

Therefore, there is a good chance that Zieger’s third book, called ‘Big quiet bodies’ illustrated by the Swiss artist of Cosmic Art Patrice Stellest, will only be found by the happy initiated few who run around the art circles. Nevertheless, one can order it directly from the editor: Druckhaus Galrev, O-1058 Berlin, Lychener Straße 73.

The Druckhaus Galrev is a publishing house established in Prenzlauer Berg. But Prenzlauer Berg is not only Sascha Anderson or Rainer Schedlinski. One must have Prenzlauer Berg in mind when Reading Zieger’s latest work. For him, this area represents a protection within a destructive environment; an auto destructive environment. Prenzlauer Berg is an element, which entrapped, locked in the middle of the prison state that was the RDA. A dark place on luminous grounds. A dark place in which Zieger opposed the sense of reality to the sense of possibility: in search of the colours of a lost wealth.

This lost wealth is the ancient literature of Walther von der Vogelweide; that of the ancient forms of poetry. The solution Zieger offers is the unique possibility to grasp things in their essence, by a transposition of an almighty look in the reality of speech.

In ‘Big quiet Bodies’, Zieger travels through the West together with some friends. The walls have fallen. The knowledge of the times of seclusion, ‘They sang to the moon old songs’, is no longer held by geographic boundaries. Nonetheless, it seems to constantly make its nest. Utopia lies in the future of the past; it is concretized in its commemoration. The light comes from the darkness: ‘A madman who goes on a quest, only to observe…’.

The Concert Dome of Marseille
In 1994, the city of Marseille starts the construction of a concert hall in the shape of a dome which, since then became a major place in the French cultural world. The project is directed by French Architect Olivier Ceyrac. Four artists are then contacted to submit an art project: Barbara Kruger, Matt Mulican, Yann Kersalet and Patrice Stellest.

Stellest therefore develops a cosmic artwork, following the concepts of global space and time also studied by American physicist Dr. Michio Kaku in the research he carried out in the field of Quantum Physics, and the development of Einstein’s ‘Theory of everything’.

Stellest’s proposal is to use three powerful diodes placed on the dome itself, and around it. In this frame of mind, a blue diode placed in front of the dome would represent the star Vega, towards which our galaxy is moving/ The future.

A yellow diode placed behind the dome would represent the Gemini constellation. Our galaxy is moving away from this constellation/ The past.

On top of the dome, Stellest would place a blue diode, corresponding to the point located on the exact opposite side of the planet, in the Austral Ocean. These two coordinates joined by an imaginary point located at the centre of the planet determine a line moving through space on both sides of our planet, similar to a compass. The idea of such an artwork is to locate the position of planet Earth and the Dome of Marseille in space and time.

On both sides of the diode located on top of the dome, Stellest would place two red diodes symbolizing the moon and the sun. Here again, Stellest wants to position the Human civilization in the globality of space. In this project, all the lights would run on solar energy. Stellest wants to offer a universal access to the consciousness of infinite space and time.

Sadly, the City’s bad financial management results in the annulment of the artistic budget; a very materialistic end to a universal project.

On April 20th 2010, an oil Platform exploited by the company BP blows up in the Ocean, a few miles away from the shores of Louisiana. This catastrophe is confirmed as the most serious oil slick ever caused by mankind, with about 500 000 litres of oil and gas released in the ocean every day. During six weeks, the scientists of BP and the American government multiply attempts to stop the leak, but their attempts stay unsuccessful.

At the end of May 2010, Stellest, who always defended the idea that artists could contribute to resolving such issues, answers the Horizon Support initiative. He gets in touch with BP in order to share with them two structures that could possibly help them resolve the problem. BP therefore asks him if he would send them plans that could be studied by engineers.

Here are basic plans Stellest sketched for you to have a general idea of the structures. A few days later, BP gets back in touch with Stellest to tell him engineers included some of the concepts he developed in a longer terms project to stop the leak.


Division of pressure forces Here, two submersible steal shafts welded together, installed one above the other. The system is designed to divide by half the enormous pressure of gas and water combined. I indicated the direction of circulation of the fluids in red in order to reach the funnels installed on top of the construction. Depending on how many outlets are installed on each funnel, the pressure can be divided further. I conceived a rotation spiral animated by the fluids’ currents to forego a crystallisation of the fluids, and plugging up of the pipes. The shafts’ walls are screwed together in parallel by four steal axes.


Here, a submergible bunker in the shape of a dome placed over the source. Left and right of this dome are placed two funnels that can be equipped with two or more outlets. The wings are welded with double steal walls and connected by welded axes. Around the dome, I foresee a ring of cage or strong sailor tissue filled up with stones that cover the outside area of the dome. This is to stop eventual leaks, as unfortunately I do not know the precise formation surrounding the source.

In March of 2009, Stellest goes to London in order to take part in a short film directed by his son Pablo. The production, called Pass :on, features eight painters and musicians, and deals with the collective potential induced in an individual expression of passion. Perhaps the pitch will make this clearer to you …


If some of us choose to express it and some of us don’t, the creative energy we call passion lives in all of us. This document explores expressions of passion, through artists who made the choice to live with and for this energy.

8 artists were filmed independently

4 painters who did not know each other’s work improvised a visual representation of their passion on 2m of an 8x1,5m fresco; while the crew captured the artists’ body expressions during the creative process.


4 musicians who did not know each other were asked to improvise a musical expression of their passion, playing around an identical beat and harmonic range they chose as the production progressed; eventually creating an original piece of music.

As well as a study of the expression of individual passion, this film explores the potential of experimental collaborative creative processes.

None of the people involved knew what the outcome would be.


Antoine Muller is a young French jazz drummer. He is a regular host of the Avoriaz Jazz Festival (France), and currently being noticed for his work on electronic music with his band onetwop.

Kabira Alieva: “The natural world became an inexhaustible source of inspiration for me and is slowly setting the stage for where some of my work may be heading. At the same time, nostalgia for Baku, my birth place, infiltrates a lot of my work, strengthening my identity as an Azeri contemporary artist and sharing my roots and culture with the rest of the world.”

Karl Rasheed Abel is a young British jazz double-bass player. He is permanently performing all over the world with different musical formations. After only a few years playing the double bass, he ins recognized in the music world as one of the most gifted naturals of his generation.


Amanda Whiting is a world-renowned classical and jazz harpist, known for her collaboration with talents such as ‘the little prince of Jazz’ Jamie Cullum, or Dannii Minogue, and her generous involvement in many charity concerts.

Axel Veison is a young artist from the South of France. He studied at the Beaux Arts in Aix en Provence and Paris. He is particularly known for his homage to Mario Prassinos, as well as his inc works. He lives and works in Paris.

John Altman is a world-renowned saxophone player and composer, famous for performing with such artists as Jimi Hendrix, Sting, Tina Turner or Bob Marley; and composing some music for such films as Titanic, Goldeneye; or again the famous Monthy Python Hymn, “Always look on the bright side of life. When asked if he would take part in the project, he said: “Of course I’ll do it. You know, when you’re a musician, you play music; what else are you gonna do?!”
More about John Altman

Silvia Krupinska's artworks have been part of group shows taking place at venues such as the Rich Mix Cultural Centre, Oxo Gallery or Triangle Space in London. She has also been given commissions for special arts projects including, the EU–Art–Network symposium in Linz—European Capital of Culture 2009, Austria, which culminated with exhibitions in Eisenstadt and in Venice as part of the 2009 Bienalle.

Margareta Nystrom


Ali Albelooshi

Director of Photography

Pablo Daniel Magee  -  Director

Pablo Magee graduated from the University of Greenwich/London, with a first class honours degree in film production. His interest for fine arts, post modern philosophy and music, backed up by his former involvement in jazz bands as a guitarist, his work at the Stephen Lawrence Art Gallery (London) and his punctual location work on major Hollywood feature films; brought him to reflect upon the many artistic creative processes. The short film Pass:on, concretized with producer Margareta Nystrom and director of photography Ali Albelooshi is a result of these reflections.