— Delphine Bedel

Lecture: Le Cinquième Département: Fragments @ Centre Pompidou

Conference Delphine Bedel, Le Cinquième Département, Fragments
With Dexter Sinister (Stuart Bailey and David Reinfurt) and Valérie Pihet (École des Arts Politiques, Paris, directed by Bruno Latour).
31 October 2010, 3 pm

A discussion of the place of research and of oral transmission within the institution, on the basis of historical and contemporary examples. Delphine Bedel revisits the experience and the legacy of the short-lived but crucially important Institut des Hautes Études en Arts Plastiques (1985-95). Under the directorship of Pontus Hulten and then Daniel Buren, this institute was once envisaged as a research department for the Centre Pompidou, the so-called ‘5th Department’. Delphine Bedel traces back the history of the Institut to the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam and the Moderna Museet in Stoklholm in the 60’s, and the influence of artists close to Pontus (Duchamp, Tinguely, Niki de St Phalle), and graphic designer and museum director Willem Sandberg. The transmission of experience, the ‘studio situation’ and breakthrough exhibitions like ‘She’, ‘Dylaby’ and ‘Bewogen/Bewegen’ will be evoked, and put in relation with contemporary practices and new education projects. The discussion will be followed by a screening of Robert Filliou‘s ‘Teaching and Learning as Performing Arts, Part 2’, Video University (1979).

Exhibition Fun Palace 21 – 31.10.2010, Centre Pompidou, Paris
Curated by Tiphanie Blanc, Yann Chateigné Tytelman & Vincent Normand.
Display by Stéphane Barbier Bouvet.
With Lars Bang Larsen, Delphine Bedel, Étienne Chambaud, Céline Condorelli, Dexter Sinister, Dolphins into the Future, Luca Frei, Karl Holmqvist, Junior Aspirin Records, Monster Island, Sarah Pierce, Michael Stevenson, Camille de Toledo and Tris Vonna Michell.

Centre Pompidou, Les Rendez-Vous du Forum

Fun Palace
The Forum, subterranean womb of the primitive utopia of the Centre Pompidou, is to house a temporary structure developed in collaboration with a team of artists, publishers, musicians, labels, writers and curators of varying backgrounds. In this space once open to the city, this mechanical arena entirely dedicated to the experience of the present, Fun Palace offers a series of explorations at the margins of the past and present activity of the institution, of its hidden dimensions, in the gaps severing the heterogeneous discourses and acts that have inhabited the place.

The title refers to Cedric Price and Joan Littlewood’s never realised project for a mobile and shapeshifting Fun Palace (1961), which served as a theoretical model and working title for the Centre Pompidou. The present Fun Palace attempts a form of discontinuous transmission, organised in ten sequences, each offered to a different guest, invited without preconditions to examine this archive and to come up with a secret history or fictional rewriting.

Oral narratives, alternative legends, and forgotten or immaterial archives sketch an invisible and fragmentary history of the Centre. This mode of interpretation looks to the traces of unfinished experiments and of abandoned ideas that still haunt the institution. A prism that disperses the written history of the Centre into an ensemble of divergent elements, the Fun Palacespeaks to that history’s blind spots and dead zones. Drawing on the shades of history and collective myth, the exhibition invents its deficits, putting into question the suspension of history that Swiss sociologist Albert Meister called – in a science-fiction story written in 1976, as the Centre began to rise from the ground – ‘The so-called utopia of the Centre Beaubourg’.

With appearances by Vito Acconci, Joseph Beuys, Daniel Buren, David Byrne, Louis Capet, Henri Chopin, Le Cinquième Département, Guy Debord, Destroy All Monsters / Cary Loren, Marcel Duchamp, Robert Filliou, Allen Ginsberg, John Giorno, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, Jean-Luc Godard and Anne-Marie Miéville, Brion Gysin, Jonathan Horowitz, Pontus Hulten, Allan Kaprow, Mike Kelley and Paul McCarthy, Mauro Lanza, Lefevre Jean Claude, Le Mur du Fond / Jean-François Bergez, David Markey, Gordon Matta-Clark, Albert Meister, Bruce Nauman, Giovanni Passannante, Raymond Pettibon, Cedric Price, Eliane Radigue, The Residents, Jean Rouch, Raymond Roussel, Philippe Seguin, Leslie Thorton, Lawrence Weiner and Frank Zappa.