Nouvelles curiosités / New curiosities

Author: Stephen Bann / Fabien Faure / Joan Fontcuberta / Nadine Passamar-Gomez / Krzysztof Pomian / Anthony
Year: 2003
Publisher: Fage éditions, in collaboration with the Musée Gassendi
Bilingual publication in French & English / 20 x 25 cm / 216 pages (76 plates & 47 illustrations)
ISBN: 2 912450 05 5
Price: €30.00
Site web: http://www.fage-editions.c.la/ 

Book published on the occasion of the reopening of the Musée Gassendi.

After extensive alterations, the Musée Départemental in Digne (renamed the Musée Gassendi, after the famous humanist, philosopher, mathematician and astronomer) proposes to the public a new reading of the collections that it contains. This reinterpretation does not observe a clear division between the sometimes unusual natural items, the scientific collections (instruments of Gassendi’s reconstituted study, Dr Honnorat’s herbarium, etc.), the 19th century paintings, and the works which, through the CAIRN (the art centre “housed” by the Réserve Géologique de Haute-Provence), the contemporary artists (Andy Goldsworthy, herman de vries, Tom Shannon, Joan Fontcuberta, Hubert Duprat, Jean-Luc Parant, Mark Dion, etc.) are regularly invited to conceive and install within the museum or in Europe’s largest geological reserve.

This book proposes to examine this museographic experience that transcends categorisations between natural items and history of art and widens the heritage field to the elements of landscape and to the natural or listed sites. With the help of the most highly-reputed specialists, it aims to analyse the history of collections and today’s reappearance of the idea of “curiosity”, and it undertakes to follow the path of “new curiosity” in contemporary creation, on the basis of the words of artists invited to Digne.

Summary and authors

Nadine Passamar-Gomez (curator of the Musée Gassendi and artistic director of the projects of the CAIRN Art Centre in Digne-les-Bains): Le musée réinventé / The Museum Reinvented

Krzysztof Pomian (director of research, CNRS): Curiosité et science moderne / Curiosity and Modern Science

Anthony Turner (science historian): Le monde extérieur à l’intérieur / The Outside World Within

Stephen Bann (professor of history of art, Bristol University, Chair of the International History of Art Committee): Un garden des Hespérides / A Garden of the Hesperides

Joan Fontcuberta (artist): Muséifier la nature / Museumifying Nature

herman de vries (artist): ceci est parfait, cela est parfait / this is perfect, that is perfect

Fabien Faure (Université de Provence) Un musée in le champs élargi / A Museum in the Expanded Field

Chronologie sommaire / Key Dates