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thierry Ehrmann : le Musée des Confluences, Miroir du temps

Le Musée des Confluences – Miroir du temps 

Le musée des Confluences signe le grand retour du musée Guimet d’histoire naturelle à Lyon et la renaissance, au troisième millénaire, du cabinet de curiosités…

Avec lui, une porte se ferme sur le musée du XXème siècle et la « migraine du conservateur », tandis qu’une autre s’ouvre pour embrasser la diversité de l’histoire et des civilisations, proposant une réflexion sur ce que peut être aujourd’hui l’appropriation du savoir, proposant d’« instruire l’oeil sur les choses rares et belles » dans un esprit de totale délectation.

Confluences

Musée des Confluences © thierry Ehrmann

Une enveloppe, un symbole

Se découvrant à la fois joyau de l’architecture déconstructiviste et prouesse technique sensationnelle, le bâtiment s’impose comme un nouvel emblème de la ville de Lyon. Les architectures monumentales ont toujours été des symboles forts, ancrés dans un lieu, témoin d’une époque.

C’est un fait depuis les civilisations les plus anciennes et ça l’est encore de notre temps, comme l’a prouvé le nouveau souffle architectural dont l’exemple le plus frappant est l’« effet Bilbao » du musée Guggenheim de Frank Gehry (ouvert au public en 1997). Et quelques semaines tout juste après l’ouverture à Paris de la Fondation Vuitton d’art contemporain, un nouvel édifice émerge dans le paysage architectural français : le musée des Confluences, installé à l’extrémité de la péninsule lyonnaise, au confluent du Rhône et de la Saône.

Le musée affiche sa silhouette singulière, pensée par le cabinet viennois Coop Himmelb(l)au comme une expérience architecturale visant à se libérer de la pesanteur tout en affirmant son désir de conquête. Cette architecture mouvante, transparente et tout en rupture, d’une surface totale de 22 000 m², a pourtant la densité d’un nuage.

Elle est d’ailleurs coiffée d’un « Nuage » (ainsi nommé) géant, flottant au-dessus du sol (son sommet culminant à quelque 37 mètres au-dessus de la chape centrale), lequel abrite 10 salles d’exposition réparties sur deux niveaux. A l’intérieur : le luxe de l’espace, une circulation fluide pensée comme un flux d’énergie, l’éloge de la transparence et de la limpidité grâce à l’usage massif du verre, le Cristal comme vortex qui relie le ciel au sol ; une déconstruction omniprésente qui se veut à l’image d’un savoir en mutation permanente.

L’architecture au service des savoirs
Le bâtiment s’ouvre autant sur la symbolique et l’imaginaire qu’il répond à un contexte scientifique, celui d’un musée. Il ne s’agit plus simplement d’imposer doctement ses trésors et ses savoirs, mais de proposer une expérience sensible de l’exposition.

L’enjeu de Confluences est de démythifier l’expérience du musée, d’autoriser une appropriation des savoirs qui passe par des espaces d’expérimentations, la possibilité de prendre des photos (généralement interdites dans les musées), de toucher certains objets, de s’offrir un tête-à-tête virtuel avec un hologramme d’Albert Einstein, entre autres.

L’exposition permanente, répartie sur 3 000 m², se décline en trois volets : « Origines », « Espèces » et « Sociétés ». Des milliers d’objets venus du monde entier forment une accumulation des savoirs – passé, présent, futur – de la géologie à l’anthropologie de l’archéologie à l’astrophysique, de l’entomologie aux arts traditionnels inuit, aborigène, africain, égyptien, khmer, d’Extrême-Orient, etc.

Au premier niveau, les expositions temporaires. Pour l’ouverture, le musée des Confluences se devait bien sûr d’honorer celui qui fut à l’origine même de ce projet, l’homme qui, dans la plus pure tradition humaniste et fraternelle, l’avait rêvé il y a plus de 100 ans : Emile Guimet.

Après 8 000 visiteurs accueillis lors de ce week-end d’ouverture (20-21 décembre 2014), la direction attend humblement 500 000 visiteurs par an, mais le musée devrait raisonnablement dépasser le million d’entrées au cours de la prochaine année.

Lyon’s new Confluence Museum – a mirror of time

The Confluence Museum represents both the grand return of the Guimet Museum of Natural History in Lyon and the rebirth, in the third millennium, of a renaissance-style cabinet of curiosities…

With its opening, a door closes on the Museum of the 20th Century and the migraine du conservateur (curatorial stagnation), while another opens to embrace the diversity of history and civilizations, offering a reflection on what the appropriation of knowledge means for us nowadays, and suggesting that we “train our eyes on rare and beautiful things” in a spirit of uninhibited delight.

The Musée des Confluences ©thierry Ehrmann

A landmark and a symbol
Housed in a jewel of deconstructivist architecture that is itself a stunning technical achievement, the building is a new landmark in the city of Lyon. Monumental buildings have always been strong symbols, rooted to a particular spot and standing witness to a particular era.

This was true for the most ancient civilizations and it remains true today, especially since Frank Gehry’s Guggenheim Museum (which opened to the public in 1997) triggered a new architectural momentum that some have referred to as the “Bilbao effect”. And so just a few weeks after the opening of the Vuitton Foundation for Contemporary Art in Paris, a new iconic edifice has appeared on the French architectural landscape: the Confluence Museum, located at the tip of the Lyon peninsula, where the Rhône and the Saône rivers meet.

The new museum’s most singular shape was designed by the Viennese firm Coop Himmelb(I)au as an architectural attempt to defy gravity while expressing a desire for conquest.

The building, which looks mobile, transparent and angular, has a total surface area of 22,000 square meters, but the apparent density of a cloud. In fact, the entire structure is a sort of giant “cloud” (that’s what the upper section is called) floating above the ground (it rises 37 meters above the central base) and contains ten exhibition rooms built on two levels.

Inside, the space is luxurious and the fluid circulation has been conceived like a flow of energy, with light, transparency and clarity, thanks to the massive use of glass. The intermediate “cristal” section is like a vortex connecting the sky to the ground. The whole project expresses a powerful deconstructivist approach reflecting the notion of a constantly evolving knowledge base.

Architecture supporting knowledge

The building functions equally well as a symbol, a threshold to the imaginary, and as an edifice with a scientific mission, that of a museum. But the mission is no longer to learnedly impose treasures and knowledge on its visitors, but rather to offer a sensory experience.

The objective of the Confluence Museum is to redefine the museum experience by allowing visitors to comprehend knowledge via experimentation and direct experience. Taking pictures is allowed (usually prohibited in museums) as is touching certain objects. You can even have a virtual conversation with a hologram of Albert Einstein (among others).

The permanent exhibition, spread over 3,000 square meters, is divided into three parts: Origins, Species and Societies. Thousands of items from around the world represent a sort of bank of knowledge – past, present and future – from geology to anthropology, from archaeology to astrophysics, from entomology to traditional arts and crafts by Inuit, Aborigines, Africans, Egyptians, Khmer people and Far Eastern civilisations, etc.

The first level houses the temporary exhibitions. For its opening, the Confluence Museum was bound to honour the man who was at the origin of the project; the man who, in true humanist and fraternal tradition, dreamed it up more than 100 years ago: Emile Guimet.

After 8,000 visitors for the museum’s opening weekend (20-21 December 2014), its management is expecting a modest 500,000 visitors a year; however, it would probably be more realistic to expect an annual visitor total of at least one million.

Publicités

Thierry Ehrmann: The Guardian: If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

Superbe article visionnaire du Guardian qui est publié sur 4 continents par Michael COSGROVE :

Thierry Ehrmann: The Guardian: If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

Thierry Ehrmann: The Guardian: If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

The Guardian est un quotidien d’information britannique fondé en 1821. Sa ligne éditoriale est habituellement de centre-gauche. Membre éminent de la « presse de qualité » britannique, le site internet du Guardian est en 2012 le troisième site de presse le plus consulté au monde. Ce qui est un véritable cauchemar pour la bande de réacs’ plus bêtes que jamais à Saint-Romain-au-Mont-d’Or

If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

This French art museum has attracted protests for its chaotic topical imagery. But does that mean it should be closed?
 
‘It is a place in which all references to the seemingly ordered and structured world outside are obliterated. And that is why some people would like to see it shut down.’ Photograph: Abode of Chaos

The first thing you see when you walk through the blackened wrought-iron gates are the stony faces of Osama bin Laden, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and other historical figures staring out from a graffiti-covered wall at a scene of utter devastation. Welcome to the Abode of Chaos, a sprawling outdoor contemporary art museum near Lyon in France. It is a place in which all references to the seemingly ordered and structured world outside are obliterated. And that is precisely the reason why some people would like to see it shut down.

Burnt-out cars, oil barrels, silver painted truck engines and mannequins that look like dead bodies are strewn around the ground. Look left, and you’ll see a damaged military helicopter tilted on its side, a yellow tank that pokes its menacing gun barrel out from a tall hedge, and an aircraft with no landing gear lies on top of a mound of earth and black gravel with the words “Let’s be cruel” daubed crudely on the side of the fuselage. Chains hang from gantries, twisted cables are everywhere, grotesquely bent steel girders and strange metallic structures abound.

The Abode of Chaos is the brainchild of Thierry Ehrmann, a freemason, artist and businessman. It is situated in the sleepy village of Saint-Romain-au-Mont-d’Or, near Lyon. Ehrmann himself lives on the site in a large house, the walls of which are covered in slogans, graffiti, images of historical figures and mysterious logos.“I’m trying to ‘de-legendise’ the world,” he says, when I ask him how he sees his work. “Janus said that chaos preceded the divine. He was right, and the world is constantly renewing itself, constructing and deconstructing itself.” He goes on to explain that his project, which began to take shape in the 1980s, “began as research into alchemy and the regeneration of matter and has evolved ever since”.

The abode’s three or four in-house artists can often be seen working on new ideas, the most recent of which is a reconstruction of Yasser Arafat’s funeral. A 10 metre-wide by 3 metre-high structure, it consists of upright, bent and rusting metal girders with piping attached to the top of each one that snakes haphazardly overhead and into the epicentre of the piece, where Arafat is represented by brightly coloured girders. The back garden is dominated by a haunting reconstruction of the remains of the World Trade Centre, and a massive metal bunker stands next to a truck with a cutting mechanism attached to the front that contains the charred remains of mannequins mixed with black tar. A burnt-out oil truck marked “Halliburton” stands as a silent witness to what feeds conflict.

The constant bombardment of images of chaos and disorder explains why some visitors consider the museum to be a disturbing or even unhealthy place. Children and young people are generally fascinated by the exhibits, however, and they arrive in large numbers (and for free) when the museum – which was visited by 120,000 people last year – is open.

Needless to say, the Abode has not gone unnoticed by the inhabitants of the village – and the mayor and others have been trying in vain to get it shut down for years. Ehrmann knows this, and shrugs his shoulders resignedly. “They will never stop trying,” he sighs, before going on to remind me of the excavated area in the grounds which contains the remains of a temple in which a massacre of Protestants is said to have been carried out in 1630. “That drives the mayor nuts!” he says.

Thierry Ehrmann: The Guardian: If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

Thierry Ehrmann: The Guardian: If you believe in freedom of expression, support Abode of Chaos

The constant attempts to have the museum shut down seem designed to muzzle artistic expression, a trend that appears to have gathered pace over the last few years, in France as elsewhere. The recent attack on Paul McCarthy’s “butt plug” statue in Paris comes to mind, as do the 2012 defacing of a Mark Rothko mural and the attempts earlier this year to get the Exhibit B show at the Barbican withdrawn.

Freedom of expression means allowing everyone to express their views within the limits of the law, and is to be fiercely protected from attack. Those who seek to stifle or defile the work of others should be condemned, as their actions are no more than an attempt to censor others.

The Abode of Chaos is a challenging environment which asks fundamental questions about the nature of change and chaos in our world, a world of flux and a constant cycle of upheaval and regeneration. We need places like this, and if ever you are near Lyon it would be well worth taking the time to visit it. Oh, and don’t forget to bring the kids.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/nov/17/freedom-expression-abode-chaos-lyon-france

Michael COSGROVE The Guardian

thierry Ehrmann: 27 sculptures colossales de la Demeure du Chaos qui vont vous transporter dans un autre monde par Dailygeekshow