musée d'art contemporain
de Bordeaux

09.10.2009 -> 07.02.2010


experience, practices, know-how

How does art relate to popular culture today ? For several years this has been a key question in the various components of the CAPC art programme. After investigating the relationships between art and Sunshine Pop, architectural utopias, the esthetics of suburban housing in the Seventies and Eighties, French psychedelics, and cinema and theatre as exhibition systems, the museum is now broadening its investigation with Insiders. This exhibition examines how art forms and cultural practices are embracing and reviving the notion of folklore. In a world transformed by the Internet revolution, where the amateur and professional spheres intermingle and where « todays mass culture [would be] tomorrow’s folk art » (Mike Kelley), the role of the artist seems akin to that of a nomadic seeker, trafficking at the intersection of different disciplines and in ever more singular contexts. The infinite repertoire of forms, images, actions and techniques from which can draw enables them constantly to challenge the frontiers of art while at the same time reaffirming its specificities.



09.10.2009 – 07.02.2010


As part of Evento 2009, the Bordeaux urban art biennale, arc en rêve centre d’architecture and the CAPC contemporary art museum have worked together to produce the exhibition Insiders.

Running from 9 October 2009 to 7 February 2010, it occupies the main hall of the Entrepôt Lainé.


EVENTO is the new artistic and urban rendez-vous of Bordeaux. Its first edition, Intime Collectif, is orchestrated by the architect and artist Didier Faustino.

At the crossroads of cultures and artistic fields, from the 9th to the 18th of October 2009, Bordeaux gives its inhabitants and its visitors a unique artistic and cultural experience: an exhibition in movement throughout the city, a proliferation of projects thought up by many international artists to bear a new perspective on the city.  


In response to world social and economic issues and the model of a global culture, in the same vein as eco-awareness and the resurgence of political commitment, new forms of solidarity are coming into play.


They give rise to specific approaches that bring new forms of exchange and organisation based on cooperation and the pooling of knowledge. This sea change in social values encourages the acknowledgment of cultural diversity and fosters the development of creative collective practices.

Insiders reflects a new approach anchored in different uses and techniques originating from particular cultures and areas.

The process by which this ‘folklore’ (literally, popular knowledge) and its modes of transmission are brought into the contemporary frame unfolds both in the framework of a global system and within local contexts. It highlights the complexity of identities moulded by many different forms of appropriation, transformation, circulation and hybridisation, which today determine the conditions under which contemporary singularities can emerge.

This dual exhibition, designed as an ‘archipelago’ of artistic and architectural propositions, brings together and interweaves a series of recent artworks, projects, work in progress and commissions.


Practices, uses, techniques

From the point of view of artistic practices, the general method behind the project is based on the principal of ‘collection’ inspired by the early folklorists who, in the 19th century, worked in their own areas making observations and producing inventories. This way of working, shared by artists, anthropologists and museums, consists of selecting, assembling, recording, comparing, displaying and preserving ‘units’ which, taken as a whole, reflect the customs of a given society.


Today, collectively organised practices give rise to new cultural acts and locally structured  modes of production and sharing which are like dissonant voices within a globalised framework. Unlike the position of ‘outsider’ which suggests an antagonistic relationship between two cultures, these ‘insider’ works suggest relationships that diverge from the world at large; instead of bipolar opposition, they offer multipolar dissent from within.


To help us explore this field of investigation, a number of correspondents or ‘observer/participants’ from around the world - artists, curators, critics and so on - have been invited to share data on specific situations. This exploratory work has produced a number of specific proposals or ‘case studies’. Whether sets of objects or new artworks, ‘minor stories’ or ‘wild archives’, these works all proceed from a preliminary ‘collecting’ phase. Instead of providing a panoramic overview, the exhibition attempts to take a more composite form: a kind of ‘choral narrative’. Insiders aims to show how art, beyond the ‘artist-as-anthropologist’ figure, produces a specific form of knowledge about today’s world.


The architectural and urban point of view emerges at the heart of contemporary economic, ecological and social reality, observing its movements and conversions. Insiders includes experiments that reveal a prospective approach to the City and to architecture, anchored in a contemporary repertory of actions and projects which, by constantly updating the meaning of ‘localness’, outline new territories, forms, signs, and relationships. These new positions give rise to alternative forms of expertise which blur the distinction between professional and amateur practices.


Unlike major urban transformations which often seem unable to escape the control of financial systems, market regulations and norms, individual and collective initiatives traffic in the nooks and crannies of a global landscape made all too uniform by the market economy.  They thrive and multiply there, making palpable changes and reflecting the emergence of a genuine cultural and social dimension.


Locally and in networks, these appropriations are a force of innovation; they invent new territories, initiate real or virtual situations, and offer opportunities for rehabilitating ‘folklore’ and paving the way for a new form of grass-roots globalisation founded on dynamically shared affinities.

How do architectural and urban design anticipate these new conditions? How do architects, urban designers and landscape designers use this new relationship with the world at large and with culture, aesthetics, technology, history and economics, to implement alternative strategies and invent new models?



A blog, designed as the on-line manifestation of a shared workspace and a virtual ‘pinboard’ where documents submitted to a research group can be posted, went live in June 2009.


Jointly published and distributed free, an exhibition journal brings together texts and images underlining the reasons for the exhibition, and prints the points of view of correspondents, artists, and guest experts who have been invited to contribute their thoughts.

The project also includes a catalogue containing theoretical texts, visual contributions and archive material. This book, to be published after the exhibition opens, provides a synthetic overview and puts all the ongoing work into perspective. It will spotlight the various projects presented in the exhibition and feature contributions from thinkers, artists and specialists in a wide range of fields including philosophy, anthropology, sociology, art history, architecture and design.




arc en rêve centre d’architecxture

CAPC musée d'art contemporain

Entrepôt Lainé. 7 rue Ferrère

F-33000 Bordeaux

Tél. : +33 (0)5 56 00 81 50


Accès / Getting there

Tram/Tramway : ligne/line B arrêt/station CAPC, ligne/line C arrêt/station Jardin public.

Parking/Car parks : Cité Mondiale, Quinconces et Jean-Jaurès.

Horaires / Opening Hours

Ouvert de 11 h à 18 h et les mercredis jusqu'à 20 h. Fermé les lundis et jours fériés.

Tuesdays to Sundays 11:00 am to 6:00 pm, Wednesdays 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. Closed Mondays and Bank holidays.


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