Paul Facchetti, "Brigitte Bardot", 1948. Cibachrome colour photograph. 30,4 x 25,3 cm. Museum collection. Photo: Cyrille Cauvet. © ADAGP, Paris 2016.
View of the exhibition. Foreground: El Utimo Grito, "Mine Shaft", 2013. Photo: Pierre Grasset/SEM 2017.
View of the exhibition. Photo: Yves Bresson/SEM 2017.
MARCH 9TH - SEPTEMBER 17TH 2017
Popcorn goes back to the American Indians. Its name comes from the noise made by small corn grains popping as they are cooked. The treat, which was already fashionable in the 1840s, has been associated with popular shows, especially in the film industry.
"Popcorn: Art, Design and Cinema" exhibition explores the relationships, exchanges, and intersections between art, design and cinema. From the Industrial Revolution to the present, "Popcorn" rolls out the red thread of production and work, and their corollaries - technology and alienation - while revealing the importance of work and of the underlying mechanisms at stake in the production of works.
Design and cinema were born a few years apart, in the nineteenth century. Both the fruit of technology, they are two fields of modernity. The stakes of their respective births were a democratic and political project for design, and a fairground attraction for cinema. Both were quickly condemned as offshoots of an impure technique, subject to market forces.
On the occasion of the tenth Saint-Etienne International Design Biennial, Popcorn offers a transdisciplinary approach and a historical anchoring of this edition’s theme, "Working promesse – les mutations du travail (Working promise - Shifting work paradigms)".
The exhibition questions the changes in our societies, from the Industrial Revolution to the post-war boom. The new forms of slavery and societal revolutions are thus highlighted through works, objects, and films. The question of cinema and its production processes is also at the heart of this exhibition, evoking the many designers who have contributed to the industry of this discipline, creating sets, objects, consumer goods, etc.
The exhibition starts from the early cinema, where work stood out as an early subject. It ends with an alternative, unknown history of the links between art, design and film. Popcorn is composed of successive close-ups: Factory-working, Moon-fiction, and Western. A selection of films made by designers from the 1920s until today is played in the Pocket theater.
The images laid out in this guide refer to movie editing. They are at once visual, formal, thematic and historical, with highlighted quotes for contextualization.
This subjective proposal covers the exhibition and helps visitors discover the many affinities between art, design, and cinema.
Alexandra Midal, curator and professor of History and Theory of Design at HEAD-Geneva,
Sébastien Delot, heritage curator, head of the Museum's collections department.