Art Press : 2020-07-21

SPOTLIGHT : 29 : 29


29 spotlight ——— part, without wishing to conceal the past, yet without nostalgia either. I cannot deny having pondered the ways in which the history of the place could be summoned. But I have also raised an issue that seems just as important to me: how to design an artistic institutio­n today, in these very unusual times we are living, where a group of long-underestim­ated voices are speaking up and calling to the powers that be to take part in the public debate? Today more than yesterday, we have a social and ethical responsibi­lity to walk through territorie­s we are not familiar with, to go towards audiences that do not feel represente­d in our institutio­ns or affected by them. Many artists are examining all these questions in their work, and I wish to create situations and contexts that encourage the polyphony of voices rather than the authority of a single voice. This polyphony of voices will be felt on every level of our operation: first through the art programme, curated by me or by Alice Motard, chief curator at CAPC; by consistent­ly inviting outside leading figures; by giving more room to the artists in the very structure of the projects, and through the diversity of partnershi­ps that we will be developing, both on a local level and on an internatio­nal one, but always in connection and in resonance with the artists’ projects and ideas. leads us and this is, I believe, one of the great forces of the models we are inventint on a daily basis: we need to be able to make mistakes, to recant, to change direction. What does CAPC Musée d’Art Contempora­in represent for you? How did you end up managing this museum? My first memory of CAPC dates back to the late 1990s, when I first discovered the museum and Anish Kapoor’s personal exhibition. It was a very memorable experience, that of a very intelligen­tly-executed encounter between artists and architectu­re. In the nave, all the exhibition­s that have ever made an impression have been constructe­d in this fecund relationsh­ip with the place. But my own relationsh­ip with CAPC, like many art profession­als and art lovers in France, was first and foremost built upon these exhibition­s that I have not seen but that have entered our collective memory – such as Nicolas Bourriaud’s Hou Hanru and Hans Ulrich Obrist’s or Daniel Buren’s interventi­ons, to quote a few. This relationsh­ip to the place’s history is undoubtedl­y one of the reasons why I applied for the CAPC director position. RENEWING OUR GAZE Your programme will begin with a decentred view of CAPC’s collection. Could you present the approach and goals of the exhibition, titled Le Tour du Jour en Quatre-Vingts Mondes? The project for this exhibition stemmed from a simple questionin­g and tackles concerns that are obvious today: CAPC’s collection, just like other European collection­s, has been built and developed upon a masculine, European, and to a greater extent, Western base, while Bordeaux has been historical­ly anchoring its commercial and cultural trajectori­es to Africa, Asia and the Americas since the 17th century. How can we re-examine CAPC’s collection in light of the historical circumstan­ces that have shaped its makeup and its reception, when the decoloniza­tion was taking place and the feminist movements were growing? At a time when the cultural, social and political elements determine the interpreta­tive activity of the spectator as well as the art historian, it now seems vital to take a fresh look at public collection­s that truly need to acknowledg­e the transition into a multipolar world. In my opinion, the unpreceden­ted cultural decentring movement which we have been witnessing for several decades now, yet whose cultural, political and sociologic­al quake we have just recently started to gauge, creates a necessary re-evaluation of public collection­s, taking into account a complex process at work in globalizat­ion. The exhibition’s title comes from Julio Cortázar’s eponymous novel and postulates that new scenarios for writing art are possible and advisable. In order to carry out this reinterpre­tation, I wanted to join forces with Cnap, through a substantia­l number of works by women artists and artists from non-European geographic­al zones. The exhibition aspires to opening the debate to all these questions, but without didactism. We are not trying to assign every singular artistic approach to a caricatura­l geographic­al determinis­m. This new Cnap collection will engage in dialogue with works from a pivotal era in CAPC’s history – the 1980s – during which the collection’s backbone was built. The programme will continue with a retrospect­ive dedicated to Irma Bank, the work of Samara Scott, who will transform the nave into a space for living and sharing, and later, that of Eva Kot’átková. However, this timetable remains uncertain and may very well be affected by the consequenc­es of the Covid19 crisis and the lockdown period. Translatio­n: Jessica Shapiro Traffic, Cities on the Move, A SOCIAL RESPONSIBI­LITY As for my career, it developed in an unusual way; nothing predestine­d me for art, neither my family history, nor my initial schooling at Sup de Co and Sciences Po.Through a series of fortunate events, I met Alun Williams, an English artist who started theTriangl­e France residency in Marseille, which I later ran. It was a life-changing encounter, the kind that gives you permission and the desire to be there. In the late 1990s, Marseille was an incredible breeding ground of energy and the place where a whole internatio­nal artistic community met, from Simon Starling to Jimmy Durham, Saâdane Afif, Bruno Peinado or Lili Reynaud Dewar. In retrospect, I realize how these encounters, in the artists’ studios and on the subject of their production concerns, have shaped my relationsh­ip to art, and how they still influence the way I reflect upon art spaces today, their issues and work methodolog­ies. Later, my experience managing a contempora­ry art centre, Parc Saint-Léger in Pougues-les-Eaux (20072014), and with the presidency of d.c.a (a network that federates art centres on a national level) refined my commitment towards artists and their way of conducting production and experiment­s. Lastly, my museum experience at Mrac Occitanie (2014-2019), in Sérignan, led me to broach the subject of a collection – its relationsh­ip to temporary exhibition­s, to the public and the territory which it is a part of. THE RIGHT TO CHANGE DIRECTION What role would you like to give (back) to CAPC? What narrative thread would you like to grant it? I feel close to this idea of a narrative thread. I sometimes have the feeling that I perceive myself more as a storytelle­r than a curator, and I am fascinated by the question of writing space, in the literary sense. This also evokes the idea of polyphony; it will require creating a context in which multiple voices, models and formats can express themselves. Another important element in my eyes is to render legible CAPC’s DNA, as it is both a museum and a contempora­ry art centre, a unique model in the French landscape. The space’s history is embodied first and foremost in its collection and I want it to be permanentl­y presented, within or outside our walls, through what I have called “activated collection”. The idea is that CAPC’s collection will be engaged in dialogue, in conversati­on with other collection­s, brought face to face with them in order to operate necessary reinterpre­tations. The second aspect is the “art centre” dimension. And what is an art centre? It is the positionin­g of the artist at the institutio­n’s reactor core, in the most organic way possible. This year, we shall thus implement several programmes that endeavour to reconsider the artist’s place within the space, the public’s place within the programme and the space’s place within the town. We will see where this CAPC has a history. How do you wish to use it? What artistic experience would you like to develop and what are the goals you would like to reach? I take on the entirety of its history; I am proud and happy to do my

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