My first documentary about Fred Forest's work is presented at his retrospective exhibition in Centre Pompidou (Paris) curated by Alicia Knock.
Co-produced by Fred Forest and Jérémie Pujau.
With Annick Bureaud, Mario Costa, Hervé Fischer, Fred Forest, Maud Jacquin, Natan Karczmar, Derrick de Kerckhove, Pierre Mœglin, Pierre Restany and Alain Seban.
Camera: Lionel Crocé-Spinelli, Aymeric François, Jérémie Pujau
Sound: Sylvain Buffet
Graphic design: Flurina Cahannes, Alexandre Paris
Visual effects: Nicolas Giraldon
Editing/color grading: Jérémie Pujau
Translations/subtitles: Valentina Besegher, Alessandro Massobrio, Guilvic Le Cam, Vanessa Barwise, Mehdi Messouci
Thanks to Fred Forest's time, generosity and the provision of these archives.
French version here: jeremiepujau.com/content/voyage-au-territoire-du-m%C2%B2-artistique
Dialogue, participation, humour and politics are the four spearheads of Fred Forest. Master in the art of communication, pioneer in video art (1967) and Net Art (1996) and co-founder of the Collective of Sociological Art and the Aesthetics of Communication, he has always fought institutions, puppets of a market whose noxiousness is no longer to be demonstrated. Unlike many others, he managed to avoid domestication but he paid a dire price for it as it took him 50 years to get the recognition he deserves.
From 12 July to 28 August 2017, the Center Pompidou devotes a retrospective to his work.
In 1978 Fred Forest founded an independent territory 60 km from Paris, the Territory of The Artistic Square Meter, the land of utopia, of which he is the president for life. It was then possible to become a citizen of this Territory and enter the game of communication he imagined, long before the birth of the social medias we abuse today.
A parody of the State and of its attributes, this dictatorial scenic space provided to social actors is only a criticism of the legitimacy of power. In this time and age when only one man is endangering 7 billion people, the issue seems quite topical...
However, this project should not be limited to this criticism, despite its stinging relevance, for the Territory of Artistic Square Meter was also a meeting place and a research laboratory where many people, artists and academics, gathered to reflect on the radical changes implied by then emerging new technologies – these people were already talking about the Internet in the early 1980's.
Cut off from everything, this house is the playground where the main action unfolds, represents the nexus of his practice, and illustrates perfectly the destitution in which he lived so long, but above all the vital importance of his work: on a gigantic surface, only a tiny part was reserved to the dwelling. The narrative develops spatially from room to room, from object to object, but also in time. A hut for big children with multiple ramifications, it brings us into an universe of poetry and humour, the main weapon of President Forest on his search for new Territories.