La Grande Beauté
“Art, ripolin-word, palimpsest-word, where each period, to impose to the others its own beliefs, calmly crosses out those from its predecessors.”
Régis Debray, Life and Death of The Image
Art, in its original definition, is a belief; a belief in the Beauty as an autonomous concept. A dated belief too, which appears at the Renaissance, when the man asserts himself as a creator, and no more as a simple creature.
Art contextualize by decontextualizing, by taking pieces in temples, churches, houses to put them on a white wall or in the middle of a square. In short, by refocusing the place around the work rather than the other way around. On this basis, a new type of space arises, an art-space encompassing all by its center. Like the temples, the museums are sacred places, determined by transcendental rules, relatively independent from the social and political reality of the city where they are established – the responsibility of the city is restricted to consider or not the sacrality of this place.
With almost 120 of them, Paris has one of the biggest concentration of museums in the world. It’s maybe because the ideological foundation of Paris is artistic, fruit of a speech of which the museum is both the preacher and the parish.
And like every ideology, the Beauty doesn’t accept any alterity : it absorbs, digests and regurgitates according to its principles. Just like the works taken from their original location, the museum visitors get robbed from their meaning.
Sometime directly, often ad absurdum, the Beauty invests situations which shouldn’t be so : trivial scenes of life, but also more serious situations, which should be untenable to us.
What questions us, it’s the ideological power of the Beauty, which, all along the series, seems to take possession of the contemporary aesthetic to embrace it. Within it scenographicly, nothing is outside of it ideologically.