Monday, October 30, 2006

Academic Art Critics discussing things in Academic French


As some of you might know, I spent Friday morning, late Friday afternoon, and Saturday morning at this conference.

And I am looking forward to the publication of the proceedings. Before I threw in the towel on a cold and rainy Saturday aft, I had seen ten presentations. Of the ten presentations, eight were read directly from the page by the presenters. Ain't no better way that I know of to put me to sleep. Since they were initially written, I figure that they are better understood read. Some of them were (excuse the academic vocabulary) soporific.

Due to unforeseen circumstances (that were not explained) the headliner that I had been waiting to see (and ask for an autograph) didn't show. But I found it very weird that is was explained in detail as to why Christine Palmieri wasn't able to make it. I can't for the life of me figure out what makes Nicolas Bourriaud's (the vedette) reasons for no-show more secret than Ms. Palmieri's.

As to the actual content of the presentations that I saw, Chantal Pontbriand has not changed one iota in the 1,057 days that I have been writing this here art blog and commenting about the Montreal and Canadian Art World. Back when I started she was all about being exclusionary and she still is. Pity. On the other hand, I was quite impressed with Isabelle LeLarge's presentation - contrary to Ms. Pontriand, Ms. LeLarge was able to identify that there is a problem in Quebecois art, and Quebecois art criticism, unfortunately she did not venture forth with any ideas for a solution. I'm going to try to get around to ask Ms. LeLarge if she wants to hunker down here over a couple of beers and discuss in a little bit more detail what's wrong, and what needs to be fixed, and perhaps how to fix it.

I also continue to be impressed with Bernard Lamarche's public speaking skills, you heard it here first, I bet you dollars to doughnuts that he becomes Minister of Culture before he dies (and no I am deliberately leaving it blank as to whether it will be a Federal ministry or a Provincial one, 'cuz I have no desire to ask him about his voting tendencies). Although Paul Ardenne impressed me even more, not only does he do public speaking as well (if not better) than M. Lamarche, I'm not as convinced that he has such an overwhelming desire to be part of the establishment.

Finally, I have to give Danielle Legentil some seriuos props, despite my pre-bashing and my post-bashing (see above) she still graciously accepted me as press, although next time, I will try harder to pay, that way I won't feel so guilty after everything is said and done.

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