In a far-off land...
Opening, Tuesday 20 June, from 6pm
With: Mali Arun, Béatrice Balcou, Chris Burden, Pia Camil, Léon-Matthieu Cochereau, Bady Dalloul, Maria Loboda, Jacques-Joseph Maquart, Alvaro Urbano, Pilvi Takala, Michael White
Exhibition Curator: Marie Griffay, Director of the FRAC Champagne-Ardenne
What story can be told by an art collection that brings together different pieces from several artists? How, by whom, and for whom, does this collection exist? What (hi)story does it tell? That of the era, art, the artwork, the artist? Who is telling this story? After the success of the exhibition Once Upon a Time (summer 2022), the FRAC Champagne-Ardenne writes a new chapter in the story of its collection with a summer exhibition entitled In a Far-Off Land. This proposal, presenting a selection of major works from the FRAC, as well as new acquisitions and treasures from the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Reims and the Carnegie Library, invites the public on a voyage through space and time.
When Léon-Matthieu Cochereau painted a visit to the Musée des monuments français over two hundred years ago, did he think of the future generations that would look at his painting? Did he think of us, who, two centuries later, would admire this testimony of a certain epoch, by visiting a museum in turn, but this time, surrounded by contemporary works?
When Jacques-Joseph Maquart produced a lithograph of a medieval Reims building in 1848, did he imagine that one day, this immense and solid Tour des Trois-Museaux would no longer exist? One hundred and fifty years after his drawing, a valuable record of a building that is no more, an American artist invited by the FRAC, Chris Burden, decided to reproduce the tower based on a postcard of the engraving discovered at the Musée Saint-Remi, thereby allowing our region’s past to be born again.
Mali Arun, Béatrice Balcou, Maria Loboda, and Alvaro Urbano highlight the preciousness, fragility, and value of the artefacts that constitute our heritage, and our History, along with recent works presented at the FRAC for the first time.
The voyage through time continues with artists Pia Camil, Bady Dalloul, Michael White, and Pilvi Takala. Exchange is at the heart of their works, whether in terms of human relations or the flow of goods and products. The gesture and the object, both real and fictive, staged in their works, inform us about our human society, with humour, gravity, and derision.
This journey in “a far-off land” where different epochs and places combine, opens up a new path, just for a moment; a kind of time corridor that we should follow if we want to build a story that is powerful enough to move, transport, and amaze us.