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Study days in Paris on Nicolas Schöffer: Conserving/restoring works of a technological nature

Thursday 03 November - Thursday 02 February 2017
(Categories: Non ICOM/ICOM-CC, Modern Materials and Contemporary Art)

November 3, 2016 and February 2, 2017, Paris, France.

Nicolas Schöffer, French (1912, Kalocsa, Hungary – 1992, Paris, France) illustrates the so-called “lumino kinetic”, programmed and “cybernetic” art. As such, he acts as a pioneer as far as the role of new technologies in works is concerned.  The workshop located in Paris in the 18th arrondissement houses an important part of the artist’s collection (works and archives) – managed by Eléonore Schöffer, his widow. A few works required interventions, repairs or restorations.

The city of Liège owns a monumental work by Nicolas Schöffer in the public space: the Spatiodynamic and cybernetic tower, listed as Wallonia’s exceptional heritage. This unique work (it collects different varying information in the town and projects sounds and light orchestrated by a specific program) had not worked since the 1970s. It was recently restored.

Nicolas Schöffer’s work is an opportunity to reflect on the technological components of contemporary works, and to extend the questions to the most specialized issues, those that immediate art and the integration, among other things, of digital technology raise

Goals of the study day:

Discuss experiences of artists, technicians, curators and conservators-restorers while questioning the concepts of authenticity(ies), substitution, and technological obsolescence with the help of practical cases (day 1).

Broad discussion and exchange on  collecting, conserving and restoring works of a technological nature, notably by envisaging the documentation and the becoming of works (day 2)

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