Welcome on our blog !

Dear teacher and classmates,

As explained during the English class, our project for this semester is about the exhibition "From One Revolution to Another" ("D’une revolution à l’autre"), curated by the artist Jeremy Deller at Le Palais de Tokyo. Your answers to our questionnaire showed that you would be interested in visiting this exhibition with us. This outing will take place on Friday, 12th December, 2009 at 6 pm after the class.

By the way, we can tell you more about the organization of this event. Thinking of you and guided by the original shape of the exhibition, we decided to avoid the classic “guided tour” which could be exhausting. Actually, our aim is to point some details in order that you construct your interpretation by yourself. That is why we have prepared a playful quiz that we will give you on the spot. Furthermore, we are preparing audio files, that you will be able to download in few days. These podcasts will give you more indications by our own voices.

Through this first contact by our blog, we also take the opportunity to introduce you to the way we will use it. This blog will serve as an interface between you and us. Indeed, we will post articles related to the social, historical and cultural background of this unusual exhibition. In your turn, you will have the possibility to enrich the content of the blog by writing comments, notably with your feed-back after the visit of the exhibition. It should be a productive way to share ideas. And we are sure that topics like popular culture and cultural revolution would inspire you!

We would be glad to see you in great number at Le Palais de Tokyo!

Let’s make this blog alive!

Laura, Romain, Emilie, Anna and Aurélien.

Extract interview Jeremy Deller (2/2)

Do you think that’s the reason why the Folk Archive got really bad critics in the UK?

JD : Absolutely so, they could not believe they had to review a show of artworks by people they didn’t know and who were anonymous. They lost some kind of authority and in a way it threatened themselves. One reviewer was so angry that she said “By showing this work in London in a gallery you are depriving real artists for space to show their work”. We couldn’t think she was being serious but she was. There is a real moment where you think, oh shit, that’s what the art world is really about…

Did some critics think you were actually making fun of the people shown in the Folk Archive ?

JD : You always get that ! That’s the first thing they say, that we are exploiting those people and that they don’t realize what’s happening when they have their work shown. But the people you see in the archive know their work is funny. Most critics think those people are not as intelligent as everyone else because they’re not artists or in the artworld or in London. In the exhibition, there are one show about the industrial revolution in Britain and in some way, it’s about loosing contact with the countryside. There is a suspicion of things made in the countryside.

Most of the archive is extremely funny, why did Alan Kane and you treat it in a very objective and serious way?

JD : We wanted it to be displayed clearly and carefully not in a chaotic way, we were not interested in making an artwork of the show. It is shown in a very straight way but the humour remains. If it were shown in a chaotic way with funny works in it, I think it would loose the humour.

Your artistic practice has been described as one of an artist/ethnographer. What do you think about it?

JD : To be honest I try not to think about how I am viewed, I haven’t studied either !

Parades are a recurring motif in your work. You seem to enjoy public events...

JD : I’m just drawn to public displays of any kind, parades are very appealing because of the music and also they hold a mirror up to daily reality. It’s not unusal. I think everyone enjoy public events, we’re all curious people. It’s part of human nature to be curious and interested in something happening in the streets or in the public sphere in general, it’s part of our social make up.

Parades and exhibitions are both public events. Do they have something in common for you?

JD : Not really, exhibitions are only semi public in my opinion. For instance, the entrance is not free. And then on the other hand, art exhibitions are now treated like spectacular events, people expect that from art exhibitions. This exhibition in Paris is definitively not spectacular, it is a very traditionnal exhibition with just objects and images.


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