The Versailles Exhibition
Nothing best for me to have the chance to see one of the most important contemporary Artist in one of the Wonder of the World: Le château de Versailles. Or how today’s creations can enlighten the beauty of such a place. It is the perfect way to discover an Artist while travelling through times. Art is a means of travelling.
About Versailles Controversy
The Guardian 10 September, 2010 : Marie Antoinette were to be reincarnated as a 21st century pop art icon, it would quite feasibly be as Miss ko2 – a statuesque sex symbol with a bow in her hair standing, doe-eyed yet dominant, amid the finery of Versailles.
But there are many who fail to see the link between the splendour of France’s royal palace and the manga-inspired work of Takashi Murakami and, as the Japanese provocateur prepares to unveil a controversial exhibition of his sculptures, the stately calm of the chateau has been disrupted by an unseemly row over contemporary art.
Ahead of next week’s opening, which will feature 22 of Murakami’s eye-catching works go on show in the salons and gardens of Versailles, more than 11,000 people have signed petitions claiming the show is degrading and disrespectful. Royalist activists, convinced it is also illegal, have protested outside the palace gates.
The objections to the exhibition, which comes two years after a similar venture by US artist Jeff Koons sparked a torrent of criticism, are rooted in the supposed incongruity of inviting Murakami’s outlandish – some say pornographic – art into the 17th century surroundings of the Sun King’s palace.
Most of the work featured, including the golden oval Buddah in the gardens and a 23ft frog gesturing at a ceiling painted by 18th century court artist Francois Lemoyne, is brash and bizarre rather than deliberately sexual or shocking, say some art critics.
Murakami, whose work has produced similar outrage in his native Japan, is undeterred by the criticism. « When someone scores a goal, someone is going to be unhappy, » he said. He hoped the Versailles exhibition would « create in visitors a sort of shock, an aesthetic feeling ».
He claimed the exhibition was a « face-off between the baroque period and postwar Japan ». Far from being sex-obsessed, he was just a normal artist, he said, attempting to depict the « social monster ».
Aillagon, a former culture minister, dismissed accusations that he was sullying the chateau with modern-day filth. « This coexistence makes sense, » he said. It was his « duty » to open the palace to the « artistic creation of our times ».
Versailles Exhibition :