Installation Project 98 · Installáció Projekt 98

participants ↓ résztvevők

(1) How long have you been making installations?

I have been making installations of varied nature and variable sizes since 1982. From 1983 to 1989 I haven't done installations.

(2) Why did you choose to make installations and not anything else?

I do other kind of works, and installation is one part of my activity. Installation is one way among others, that permits to work more spatialy and concretly with objects or chosen materials, in a space or at a place which is either decisive or not. In my works, installation can be related to a place (rarely), or connected with my copy-art and mail-art work (for instance: “fils du peuple”, Strasbourg, 1994; or “De jour en jour”, installation-performance in Chartres, 1993). It can be bound with my sculpture work when it exceeds simple assembling of fixed materials to extend in space due to relations among objects (at this moment, for me, the sculptures become installations, but there is no necessity to name precisely the artistic form of these objects).

(3) What do you think of your own works?

I have nothing to think about my own works, I think them.

(4) What do you think the difference is between your own work and other installations?

The only way to compare my installations to others is to precise the history and the context. First I don't claim to be an “installation” artist, I only use installation as any other medium. Most of them are tied to my copy-art and mail-art activities. For two years my new sculpture activity drifts to some objects that go beyond the traditional concept of sculpture, that I name “installations”. My ordinary works in copy-art are books and the installations with photocopies are unfurling these multiples with numerous pictures in the space or on the wall (for instance “Luc'h/poultrenn” in 1996), sometimes in relation with objects (for instance “Des copies pour 1000 ans” in 1991, “Mouvement arrêté de l'Histoire” in 1992, or “Myt(h)roupeau” in 1997).

A particular case was the installation “De jour en jour”, in Chartres in 1994. It was not isntalled by me, but by Cesario Rachador, the artist in charge of the gallery. A3 copies were mailed every day and pinned on the wall day after day. They were destroyed the last day of the exhibition during a performance.

Another particular case was the radio-video installation “Regarder l'inaudible, écouter l'invisible” (1983) based on some ideas developed in my paintings at this time. These means (especially radio and video) seemed to me the best ones at the moment. I have not used them ever since, except in L'épongistes.

At last, I don't make big difference among the varied media or means and the varied artistic expressions I use in my artworks. Today for my work I prefer to use the word “dispositif” to any other (“sculpture”, “installation”, “book”, “performance”...). It seems more open and more exact from a phenomenal point of view.

I never look at my works, even the installations, in relation to other artists' works, even if there are some relations. It's not up to me to talk about that, for the moment.

(5) What do you think of the relationship of traditional artwork and installation?

For me it is not a relevant question. I don't see any difference, unless material, between traditional works and installations. As an artist and as a teacher I can say that installation is already a traditional medium used by many artists and students in varied ways and very different contexts, for many years.

(6) What is the size and material of an installation determined by?

Size and material of my works are determined, by the occasion, idea and process. Often, the place is determined by the installation and not the opposite, as in many works in situ.

(7) Could you mention the installation you consider to be the largest and the smallest one?

Generally, a molecule seems to be the smallest and - unhappily - Earth to be the largest installation. In my personal case, my installations are often variable in their exhibitional size.

(8) Is there any object or idea that cannot be installed?

All what is beyond the Earth’s dimensions could not be installed, for the moment. (Piero Manzoni's “World pedestal”, but is it an installation?). Auschwitz and Hiroshima can't be installed.

(9) How does environment affect the installation of the work?

Environment doesn't affect any of my works. But it can't be in contradiction with them either. Maybe the contrary is right: installation affects environment. I prefer neutral places but sometimes I'd like to work for some specific places (for instance I have never installed “Dans le flux, le reflux” on a beach or on a rocky coast at seaside, but I wish I would).

(10) Do you know any fact that restricts the possibilities of installation?

Police and time.

(11) Do you like making installation for order or at request?

I can't see any objection to it.

(12) What do you think of preserving an installation?

There is no sense to that, I never conceive my installations (and less and less my other works) as eternal objects. There is a lot of vanity in the will of preserving artworks. “I'm younger than that now” ... But I understand that some works become permanent, and they work on a long time (as the “Lightning field” by Walter de Maria).

(13) Can the value of an installation be estimated and how?

I have no idea about that question.

(14) How does copyright apply to installations preserved only in documents?

I don't see any other possibilities.

(16) Your questions, if there is any, and your answers to them.

Nothing more... otherwise thanks for Artpool to exist.

Jean-François ROBIC (F)