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36,000 YEARS OF MODERN ART – selected at Archaeology Festival in Narbonne : November 2020


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36,000 years of modern art

A film by Manuelle Blanc

At the beginning of the 20th century, the discovery of prehistoric art coincided with the birth of modern art. From Picasso to Soulages via Miro, Brassai, De Staël or Penck, the fascination of artists for their distant ancestors is immediate. “They invented everything,” says Picasso during his visit to Lascaux: depth of field, relief, perspective, movement. In 1994, the wonders of Chauvet definitively challenged the idea of progress in art, and the virtuosity of the first artists once again dazzled the great names of contemporary art, as the painter Miquel Barcelo, the sculptor Giuseppe Penone, and the photographer Raphaël Dallaporta all testify in this film.

Throughout this film, striking correspondences are highlighted between multi-millennial artwork and modern and contemporary work. This documentary revisits cave art in a new light and proposes a new vision of modern and contemporary art.

To shed light on this fruitful dialogue between yesterday, before and today, the film features archaeologist Carole Fritz, philosopher Jean-Paul Jouary, Cécile Debray and Rémi Labrusse, both curators of the exhibition “Prehistory, a modern enigma”, which took place in the summer of 2019 at the Centre Pompidou. Through their different point of views, the film reminds us that the question of humanity’s survival – after the butchery of the First World War, after the genocides of the Second World War, and at the time of the Anthropocene – constantly rekindles in artists the need to return to their origins.

The film will be screened at the Archaeology Festival in Narbonne in early November 2020.

More information about the Festival : here