Pleasures are not what is harmful, only their rarity, which gives birth to excess. Charles Fourier The title has been borrowed from a work by Charles Fourier (1772- 1837): ‘Le Nouveau Monde Industriel’ is at once the presentation of a new generation of emerging artists in France, a project based on the Moulins’ industrial past, and an exhibition exploring the history and the utopian potential of Fourierism.
The exhibition includes the works of 21 young artists, and has been arranged in the central hall in the form of a phalanstère, Fourier’s model for a harmonious and universal community, which he meant to exist as the platform of a new state. Partly architecture—a sort of farm with living quarters and buildings for entertainment—the phalanstère is also an organisation where the production of material wealth, along with that of a new society, is con-ducted according to the interests and capabilities of each person—in just the same way as a group exhibition is made.
The existence of overlapping interests allows for an equitable distribution between individual and collective interests. In his thoughts about the organisation of work, the relationship between the sexes, and between the individual and society, Fourier stands as a precursor to socialism and French feminism. If few 2/ sponsors responded to his appeals during his lifetime, a large number of attempts were made throughout the nineteenth century in France and in the US to put his phalanstère model into practice.
The most famous was the Guise familistère, created by Godin on plans that he had drawn up himself, and which functioned exactly as it had been established up until 1968. In this historical and philosophical context, the artists have proposed works, installations, working methods, relationships… in dialogue with the ideas of Fourier. Some have chosen to illustrate these ideas (Vivien Roubaud, Enzo Mianes), others have chosen to underline their quixotic dimension, even to the point of turning them towards an entirely dystopian vision (Raphaël Fabre). Some offer to look at contemporary society though the prism of Fourierism, revealing areas of absurdity and violence with acerbic precision (Mathilde Ganancia, Bianca Argimon).
The exhibition reflects the organisation of the phalanstère by including, alongside the static component consisting of artworks hanging in the space, a dynamic component activated by the collective work of the Boissy born artistic community. For this, the press conference that will take place on the 25th of September at the Consulat in Paris (itself a space of co-working and multidirectional cooperation) will include a programme of music and performances created in collaboration with the artists.
It will be a teaser for the festival that will take place at the Moulins in 2017, and which will also be created in collaboration with the artists. Bringing together the worlds of work and affect, social experience and entertainment, The New Industrial World is a true approximation of Fourierist thought. A documentary film by Mathilde Supe will offer a resolutely hybrid testimony to this attempt at activating Charles Fourier’s vision.