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#FAbdx - Account of the session: Entrepreneurs and artists - are they co-workers in the city of tomorrow?

Debate with Massimiliano Fuksas, architect, Pascale Marthine Tayou, Visual artist , Bice Curiger, Artistic director of the Vincent van Gogh Foundation in Arles, Laurent Dumas, Chairman groupe Emerige, contemporary art collector, Nicolas Gaume, Director of the Developer eXperience, Microsoft, Managing director Microsoft France, Olivier Poivre d’Arvor, Le Grand Tour – ambassador in charge of French cultural attractiveness, José Munoz, managing director Euro Méditerranée – Suez Environnement, Michel Magnier, Director for culture and creativity department of the Creative Europe European Commission, moderated by: José-Manuel Gonçalvès, Director of the Centquatre - Paris

“What are the new paths paved by the entrepreneur-artist paradigm?” asks José-Manuel Gonçalvès. To outline a first path: “Today, we are in a new phase of innovation, characterized by new approaches, new spaces, new methods. The space exists due to the project. The space fosters the connection”.

“I am against strategy”, asserts Massimiliano Fuksas. Less Aesthetics More Ethics also means less strategy and more emotions. “I attempt to grant more emotions to other people and spaces while searching for a way to promote human encounters around the work of art, in the piece’s physical space. Today, we must unite all forms of art. We must accept discussion and collaborative work. Expression is what matters the most”. “Human beings are also at the heart of my motivation and my creative process”, claims Pascale Marthine Tayou. “I was a student at the fall of the Berlin wall, when this wave of freedom arrived in Africa. Today, I replenish myself in the abyss to create shapes and to incarnate the symbol of my vision. Is emptiness an existing entity in an environment where pleasure exists, and where comfort is fundamentally uncomfortable? It is essential to highlight the discomfort of comfort!”

“The idea is to include artists in the construction process of this new site, home to the Vincent Van Gogh Foundation”, reminds Bice Curiger. “The great freedom allotted in this space allows us to mix pieces of historical heritage with contemporary works, such as those by Raphael Hefti”. The young artist plays with light by penetrating the heart of the glass-making process, recommending his workers to make the mistakes they so often attempt to avoid. This is a metaphor for a young artist entering the material world, while accompanying our daily urban life.

Relive the debate:

“Our mission – with a piece, a building – is to open our nation’s contemporary creation to the public so as to debunk the idea that contemporary art is solely reserved to an elite class”, explains Laurent Dumas. “Our professionals have worked together to answer to this goal, by installing works of art made by artists residing in France, in daily living spaces”. Concretely, 50,000 people will gain access to these pieces of contemporary art within the first year of the project. The “Outdoors Museum” is an example of the initiative, which will be presented rue de Wagram, as is the future metro station, “Pont Cardinet”, created by Tobias Rehberger. 

“For the Suez Environment group, culture is integrated as the fourth pillar of sustainable development”, confirms José Munoz. Investments are developed, be it during the rehabilitation of historical or natural heritage sites on an European scale”.

“In corporate history”, recalls Nicolas Gaume, “the conception of a building followed an entrepreneurial activity as its functional reflection. Today, it precedes it. The organization of a space calls upon new forms of work management”. At Microsoft, innovation occurs with the creation of new spaces dedicated to meetings and collaboration.  Innovation means uniting project leaders, allowing them to share their values, but most of all to bring together future clients or investors thanks to spaces open to the outside world. Beyond fostering conversations, these spaces participate in co-creative projects.

“Audience members are set aside. We must not forget this”, insists Olivier Poivre d’Arvor. “There are numerous people who are neglected by the world of culture. And the European Union has done nothing to resolve this failure: cows are 1,000 times more subsidized than artists. Europe focused on heritage and particularly forgets to promote spaces for culture. Citizens must be allowed to create their “playlist” of favorite sharing spaces. There are several international places that serve as noteworthy examples: the SESC in Brazil combines esthetic emotions with daily practices (be it art or sports) through various amateur and professional activities. These spaces are created and sustained so that people can spend time in them. Physical proximity responds to a democratic need”.

“The EU budget dedicated to culture is very limited as culture does not fall into the Commission’s core competences”, contends Michel Magnier. “Innovation is thus conducted in cities, as States focus solely on heritage. Municipalities spend twice as much on innovation than the State does in France. Furthermore, the trend is to recreate what has already been made elsewhere. As such, to foster exchange, we will create a network of ‘creative hubs’”.