Thursday, 31 December 2009

The Consistence of the Visible - Press Release English Translatione

Couldn't find this press release/declaration anywhere in English so translated it myself.  Currently editing a draft of a novel I needed it in English; I'm interested in the line Dada has taken, through the 20s and 30s in France to Pierre Rastany and Co. in the 1960s, himself a champion for Bourriaud and the whole scene in France that came with the Palais de Tokyo in the 1990s, 2000s. Its a strange sort of backbone that appears, at times, to be a surreptitious hign Modern line, self assured, strong. Certainly when I got to see retrospective of Nouveau Realisme in 2007 in the Grande Palais I remember being struck by how contemporary they felt, or at least how faded some of the labels seemed -  relational aesthetics - in the face Daniel Spoerri & Eat Art amongst others. 

Fondation D'Enterprise Ricard

10 Octobre - 22 Novembre 2008

The Consistence of the Visible

For this, the 10th anniversary of the Prix Ricard, it seemed important to me to complete the normal function of this exposition (a thematic presentation of emerging artists from France’s artworld) by having a critical preamble which would include ‘historical’ or confirmed artists. This inclusion poses a very simple question: what marks the boundary of an artwork? By what gesture is its terrain brought about, puts in places its limits, outlines the perimeter of its exploration?


In thinking of the concept of ‘bricolage’ with which Lévi-Strauss defined mythological thought, I thought to present this subjective story in the form of a reunion of fetisches: that is to say, objects which, despite their apparence of detail, represent a complex thought which is found suffused throughout them.  Such is a hologramme.


This question, regarding the ‘plan of composition’ of an artwork, is not innocent or free, nor without repercussions from the choice of ‘young artists’  that continue it on. 


In one way it underlines the importance of initial gestures and of the necessity, when making a work, of laying out a terrain and to define a specific manner of surveying this terrain. As so many artists today content themselves with the production of objects under a vague ‘theme’, more often than not borrowed from the contemporary ideological notebook, it is better not to forget that an artwork resembles a journey more than a mere tour of the local gallery quarter.


Elsewhere this question shares a surprising point in common, without doubt the only, between two key actors in French art whom this exposition would like to to pay hommage: Pierre Restany and Bernard Lamarche-Vadel. They were, for the young art critic I aspired to be at the turn of the 1990s, two unique role models. Between ‘the technological humanism’ of one, directed toward social production and the totalisation of the visible, and the subtle aristocraticism of the other, through the singular and the inexpressible, we find ourselves in the presence of two disimiliar trajectories belonging to two different generations, but united by the same independent spirit and a similar engagement in the world of the French artworld.


Restany celebrated in 1960 ‘the autonomic expression of the real’ in launching the Nouveau Realiste movement, which insisted in the radical gesture of ‘direct appropriation’, founder of all artistic practice – ‘automatic manifestaion of the sensible’ – explored in a new ‘urban nature’. Twenty-six years later, Lamarche-Vadel was to regroup twelve artists for his exposition ‘What is French Art’, by the pertinance of their ‘posture’ or their ‘process’, that is the invention of ‘ways to put in process (their) existance in the course of creating their artwork’. At first glance dissimiliar, these two propositions constituet in my eyes two levels of the same conceptual discourse.


The nine artists that I have choosen for this 10th edition of the Prix Ricard respond to this double promulgation: supporting their work on one hand with a collective sensibility and on the other with a personal composition, riding the waves emitted by the social but dissociating themselves from it by a singular point de départ. They can subscribe to the formula of Lamarche-Vadel which gives this exposition its title: ‘Therefore what we consider in the visible, the art work, must above all have the texture of an extreme doubt about the consistence of the visible.’

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