Le Grand Monnayage
Biennale d’art contempoirain de Melle
30.6. – 23.9.2018, preview 29.6.2018
Melle, Deux-Sèvres, France
curated by: Chloé Hipeau-Disko & Frédéric Legros
Ghada Amer, Jannis Kounellis, Aram Bartholl, Jean-François Krebs, Xinyi Liu, Cécile Beau & Emma Loriaut, Renata Lucas, Brognon Rollin, Clemens Botho Goldbach, Pierre Mercier, Guglielmo Castelli, Otobong Nkanga, Ali Cherri, Yoko Ono, Pauline Curnier Jardin, Christodoulos Panayiotou, Hubert Duprat, Pieter Vermeersch, Jimmie Durham, Philip Wiegard, Elsa Fauconnet, Kimsooja, Gloria Zein
The city of Melle is unique because of the presence of its mines and its minting which placed it in the heart of Europe for centuries. Quickly, this specificity of the city seemed to us a quite contemporary angle which allowed us to approach subjects such as money, exchange, circulation, value and quite simply stone and ore.
With “Le Grand Monnayage” we had this desire to tell stories and share experiences and as such Melle is a considerable source of inspiration. Here, no white cubes, but a multitude of heritage places open to artists and visitors: three Romanesque churches, one of which was a prison, an ancient court that inspired Jean de La Fontaine, and the silver mines, forgotten for several centuries, which remind us that Melle was the city whose production of silver and coins was the most important in all Western Europe at the time of Carolingians and until the tenth century.
Melle and its many curiosities are a reality that one contemplates only by staying there. Carried by the stories specific to each place, the artists’ investment in this adventure has been total. Fascinated by the Mines, walking the streets of Melle, taking advantage of this unique framework of creation and exchanges, they have made the city a place of projects and production, a territory of art.
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