works from the Fond National d'Art Contemporian, France
The exhibition Au delà des Images (Beyond Images) is based on the collection of the Fonds National d'Art Contemporain (National Fund for Contemporary Art, FNAC) and brings together the works of fifteen French and Lebanese artists. The exhibition constitutes a space where the relationships between art and documentary images are rethought.
The artists presenting their work are particularly interested in inventing new relationships to the real, and in inscribing their research in common reality. However, the resulting photographic works differ from journalistic and documentary images, two genres which are currently popular with the public at large. The reason behind this is that the process of defining an aesthetic language invariably involves a critique of the image.
The relationship image-spectator is entirely based on an ethical engagement through a leeway of signification or the creation of a poetic space, which is difficult to find in the performative efficiency of journalistic photography. The art of the 20 th century and of the 1990's has redefined an ethical dimension of the artwork.
The notions of the individual, of territory, and of the city are at the heart of the images of Valérie Jouve, Michel Lasserre and Paoula Yacoub, Jean Luc Moulène, and Chantal Akerman. For each of these artists, at varying degrees, aesthetic research is thought in relation to political and social factors. However, far from objective photography, they define above all a subjective approach, tied to their personal histories, encounters, and vision of the world.
In the same vein, the works shown in the exhibition allow us to discover personal and intimate territories that acquire their meaning within a much larger context. The exhibition proposes to make manifest this moment in France and in Lebanon where artists are renewing their relationship to the real, with a precise knowledge of the wagers of Modernity and with the awareness of a necessity to reaffirm the critical function of art.