Thursday, July 06, 2006

Offensive? You be the judge


In today's La Presse Jérôme Delgado writes an article that ends with this paragraph:
Avec Brian Jungen au Musée d'art contemporain et l'art haïda au Musée McCord, les artistes des Premières Nations sont partout à Montréal cet été. C'est la tendance: l'art inuit était déjà à Québec ce printemps (Musée national des beaux-arts), comme Norval Morrisseau, artiste chaman, suivi, cet été, d'Emily Carr, à Ottawa (Musée des beaux-arts du Canada). De vrais artistes. Pendant ce temps, à Paris, on inaugure le Musée du quai Branly, axé sur les arts primitifs.
I translate it (albeit badly) as:
With Brian Jungen at MACM, and the Haïda art at the McCord, First Nation artists are all over the city this summer. It is the in-thing: Inuit art has already been to Quebec City this past spring (MBANQ), like Norval Morrisseau the shaman artist, followed by Emily Carr in Ottawa (NGC). Real artists. During this time in Paris, the Branly Pier Museum was opened which is centered on the Primitve arts.
Is he calling the art that Brian Jungen, Robert Davidson, Norval Morrisseau and Emily Carr make, art at an early stage of technical development; characterized by simplicity and (often) crudeness? Or am I missing something here? Last I checked the Branly Pier folk were writing things like "le musée du quai Branly sera dédié aux Arts et Civilisations d’Afrique, d’Asie, d’Océanie et des Amériques." Not a single mention of how it was made or any characterization of it. If anything, I'm fairly certain that they are trying to get away from the colonial concept of non-European art.

And then on top of it he completely forgot to mention Mr. Laliberte's recent loan to the Musée des beaux arts as well.

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