Friday, April 04, 2008

Patti Smith - Land 250 - Paris

The Fondation Cartier in Paris is hosting Land 250, a major solo exhibition of the visual work of American artist and performer Patti Smith. Bookerfatz2 and I, we met there during lunch time last Wednesday to discover that behind the expressive voice that we love so much is a multi-faceted artist.
It's not a surprise that Patti choose Paris to exhibit the various aspects of her creative process. She used to live in the Montparnasse district during her first Parisian sojourn in 1969 close to the cemetery where are buried poets like Charles Baudelaire, Robert Desnos, Serge Gainsbourg and Tristan Tzara as well as writers like Samuel Beckett or Susan Sontag. Also, the source of much of her inspiration has been key figures of French culture, including Arthur Rimbaud, Nicole Stéphane, Jean Genet, Antonin Artaud and René Daumal.
More than just assembling selected drawings, paintings, photographs, recording, short films or handwriting poems coming from all over the world (1967 to 2007), the exhibition as a carte blanche given to Patti Smith is intended to be a comprehensive project that expands beyond the exhibition space. For example, she organized herself the program of artistic evenings where she will perform solo or accompanied by her group and invited various musicians and poets to perform on stage (Jeffrey Lewis, Tom Verlaine, Fred Frith...).
For those of you like me who don't know what is a Land 250: it’s a Polaroid, the Automatic 250 Land Camera. My feeling is that it's not the quality of the photographs taken by Patti Smith who is interesting, it's her relation with what she seen or the ones she met. “I am not a photographer, yet taking pictures has given me a sense of unity and personal satisfaction. They are relics of my life. Souvenirs of my wandering. All that I have learned concerning light and composition is contained within them.”

At the
Fondation Cartier from March 28 to June 22, 2008.


Patti Smith - Gimme Shelter .mp3
Patti Smith - Parade .mp3
Patti Smith - Smells Like Teen Spirit .mp3
Patti Smith - When Doves Cry .mp3
Patti Smith - A Poem_For Jim Morrison - The Nova Convention .mp3

Photo: Autoportrait, New York / Selfportrait, New York City
Polaroid/Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain, Paris, March 28 – June 22, 2008
© Patti Smith/© Fondation Cartier pour l’art contemporain



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Patti Smith in Fondation Cartier (video) :

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