At the start of the year, the New National Museum of Monaco initiated an artist residency in the Principality's two secondary schools, Charles III and François d'Assise Nicolas Barré. The pupils are invited to reflect on what collecting means and how this approach can be expressed in artistic practice. The first guest artist, Oriol Vilanova, is interacting with two Year 9 classes between January and June 2019, and will attend five workshop sessions.
Oriol Vilanova is known for the work he creates from large-scale collections, heterogeneous furniture and objects, and above all, postcards. His artistic practice is based on the processes of repetition and exaggeration, in the context of minimalist installations or performance.
This paradoxical conceptual approach still has a literary and fictional dimension, however, drawing on themes such as immortality, the relationship between time, memory and history or heroism.
At a first introductory session in January, pupils were invited to photograph their collections (of coins, stamps, playing cards, books, toys or souvenir items), paying particular attention to the quality of the shots and the staging of the collection.
At the second session - which took place on 12 and 13 March – pupils had the opportunity to present the collections they had photographed, while being aware of the meaning and importance of a collection inventory.
In addition to this approach, Oriol Vilanova suggested to the pupils that they could take inspiration from online videos on the subject of unpacking objects, the ASMR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response) or Asian trends of minimalism, consisting of getting rid of all superfluous items, keeping only what is essential.
The aim of this artistic approach is to raise pupils' awareness of the different ways in which objects are represented on line, as well as their digitisation and dematerialisation.
At the next sessions, the pupils will be invited to create a new personal collection, imaginary this time, based on objects from their digital representations.
A presentation of the results of this project is scheduled for early June.
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