“ENSBA”

“Sans Rivage”: Xie Lei at Anne de Villepoix Gallery

Parisian gallery Anne de Villepoix is to host an exhibition entitled “Sans rivage” dedicated to Chinese artist Xie Lei from 5 September to 31 October 2015. It is the artist’s third solo exhibition at Anne de Villepoix. This exhibition is to present twelve new paintings by the artist. Xie Lei’s paintings question the world and its representation the viewer has. His work focuses primarily on the use of images by the media. Based upon real-life events, he does not so much seek to exploit, but rather maintains a certain distance with them. Clélia Zernike, philosophy professor at ENSBA, refuses to see only pessimism within the artist, and highlights the ambiguous nature of the artists creations. “You can read in the expressive movements of the paintbrush, the impulsivity of the touch, in the non-disappearance in the lined of pencil in the claim of vibrant colors, the faith in resurgence, the strong will of a renewal by man for man.” A graduate of the Central Academy of Fine Arts in China in Beijing as well as ENSBA, Xie Lei has had several solo exhibitions in Geneva, Hong Kong and...

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Protests after Nicolas Bourriaud’s Dismissal

The French Ministry of Culture announced the ousting of Nicolas Bourriaud Officer of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (ENSBA) on July 2nd , 2015. Since then, a feeling of disbelief has been expressed through multiple protests against the decision of Minister Fleur Pellerin, both internationally and in France. The National Association of Directors of Art Schools (ANDEA) describes this measure as “outrageous, unjust and irresponsible” while on social networks, a petition set up by students of the ENSBA was circulated. Among Fleur Pellerin’s complaints against the former director, is the is the resistance to make the institution more “internationally influential”, with Nicolas Bourriaud defending himself in an interview given to Télérama, recalling collaborations with various schools in Tokyo, Beijing, Buenos Aires, and Reykjavik. ANDEA also supports the open door policy – as well within the international market – led by Nicolas Bourriaud. For its part, the Committee of Professional Galleries said in a statement: “All the players in the world of contemporary art today are disadvantaged by this decision.” As for the possibility for the director of the Villa Medici, Eric de Chassey to retrieve the post, the Ministry of Culture denies any favoritism through the eviction of Nicolas Bourriaud. Le Canard Enchaîné propagated the rumor that Eric de Chassey had gained access to the position thanks to his proximity to actress Julie Gayet. Nicolas Bourriaud, born in 1965, is a historian and art critic. He co-led the Palais de Tokyo with Jérôme Sans, until 2006, in Paris, before taking up the post as Gulbenkian curator for contemporary art at the Tate Britain until 2010. That same year, he assumed the functions as Head of Inspection of artistic creation to the Ministry of Culture. He was appointed director of the National School of Fine Arts in...

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Nicolas Bourriaud, director of ENSBA, the subject of debate

After three years as the director of Paris’s École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts (ENSBA), Nicolas Bourriaud has struggled to gain the unanimous support of the establishment’s academic community. In May 2014, 14 teachers — out of a total of 19 — and a group of students from the administrative board wrote a letter to Aurélie Filippetti, France’s Minister for Culture and Communication. The aim of the document was to oppose the proposed dismissal of three senior members of staff at ENSBA; a decision announced by Nicolas Bourriaud at the board meeting on 20 May. The three members concerned are Frédéric Jousset, president of the administrative board; Gaïta Leboissetier, director of studies; and Thierry Jopeck, director general. This latest imbroglio comes as an additional hindrance during an already-tense period for the school, as tensions rise between students and professors concerning decisions made by Bourriaud. Most recently, protests were made at the — apparently unilateral — decision for ENSBA to take part in Paris’s CHOICES weekend; a decision viewed by the students as a marketing opportunity and one which was “hidden” from students by the school’s administration. This disagreement prompted several peaceful student demonstrations, as well as banners at the school’s entrance. Previously, in October 2013, students protested against a private event for Ralph Lauren held in ENSBA, which prevented access to fourteen studios over the course of several days, just prior to exams. In spite of these events, Nicolas Bourriaud has gained the support of numerous figures on the art market. A petition in his favour has been signed by more than 400 people, including Daniel Buren, Ami Barak and Hou Hanru. With such divided opinions, it will be up to France’s Minister for Culture and Communication to take the final decision on the...

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Jean-Marie Appriou, Sophie Lamm and Constance Nouvel win the Yishu 8 prize

Beijing, 2 December 2013, Art Media Agency (AMA). Christine Cayol, founder of the Maison Yishu 8, and Henry-Claude Cousseau, who oversees the French branch of Yishu 8, announced the winners of the 4th edition of the Yishu 8 prize on 26 November 2013 at the Musée Rodin in Paris: Jean-Marie Appriou, Sophie Lamm and Constance Nouvel. The award, created in 2011, enables three French artists per year to take up a residency at the Maison Yishu 8 in China, a centre dedicated to contemporary art creation. The three artists are to spend three months in Beijing from January 2014. Each artist is to exhibit their works produced at the Maison, donating one of their choice at the end of their stay. The 2014 selection committee was made up of Henry-Claude Cousseau, former director of the Ecole Nationale Supérieur des Beaux-Arts (ENSBA) in Paris and President of the Yishu 8 selection committee; writer, philosopher and founder of Yishu 8 Christine Cayol; collector and President of the Association for the International Diffusion of French Art (ADIAF) Gilles Fuchs; writer and art critic Michel Nuridsany; artist Stéphane Calais; Director of MAC/VAL Alexia Fabre; Laurence Fontaine from the Premier Regard Association; Laurence Poirel, also of Premier Regard; and Janny Lauga, head of the ENSBA’s cultural programme in...

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Nicolas Bourriaud – new director of École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts

Paris, 3 November 2011, Art Media Agency, (AMA). On suggestion of the Minister of  Culture, Frédéric Mitterrand, Nicolas Bourriaud was appointed chairman of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts (ENSBA) on 31 October 2011. He succeeded officially Henry-Claude Cousseau, previous director since 1st September 2000. Nicolas Bourriaud (born in 1965) is a historian as well as an art critic, specialist in contemporary art. From 200o until 2006 he was co-founder and co-director at Palais de Tokyo in Paris and he was also named curator at Tate Britain. He was also a professor at the University of Venice and since 2010 he has been the leader Inspector at the Ministry of the Culture for the artistic creation. He has written several works and created the magazines Documents sur l’art, Revue Perpendiculaire and Stream. In order to succeed Henri-Claude Cousseau there were nine candidates officially presented and six of them were selected by Georges François Hirsch, the General Inspection Director for artistic creation. The candidates who were selected for their projects and admitted by Frédéric Mitterrand were Nicolas Bourriaud, artist Jean-Marc Bustamante, the Assistant Director of the Musée national d’art moderne Catherine Grenier, art historian Adrien Goetz, Yves Aupetitallo director of the artistic centre Le Magasin, as well as academic Patricia Falguières. Nicolas Bourriaud who was elected, must continue the work that Henry-Claude Cousseau started, concerning the insertion of the ENSBA in the procedure LMD (Licence – Master – Doctorate). According to the Minister of Culture the institution “shoud be established as an excellent European pole for higher education of visual arts, connected to the branch of Superior National Art Schools.” The new director should reinforce the synergies between the different components of the school as well as propose innovate exhibitions, strengthen students’ work and follow the international range.” However, the...

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