Claude Mollard

Plaidoyer pour le FRAC. The FRAC are thirty years old and are still questioned

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Keywords: Contemporary Art; Quality of Works of Art; Affordable Prices; Transparency; Regions; Support of Creation.

The article objects to the many critics targeted at the FRAC (Regional Funds for Contemporary Arts) since their creation in 1984 by the French Ministry of Culture, and even more so in their 30th anniversary. To the critics concerning the quality of the works of art acquired, the author replies that, notwithstanding some mistakes, the FRAC have been purchasing, at affordable prices, works by some of the most famous French and international contemporary artists (Boltansky, Pistoletto, etc...) before they reached fame. He also underlines the diversity in the choices of works of art by the different regions. As for the reproach of the high costs of the FRAC, he replies that the average annual cost of 1 million euro for each FRAC - purchasing, safeguarding and exposing 1000-3000 works of art - is five to ten times cheaper than the cost of a municipal theatre. He finally objects to the critics of transparency, that all the informations about the 26.000 works of art purchased can be found on the website videomuseum. The real issue presently at stake, in his opinion, deals with the future perspectives of the FRAC. Some of the regions are actually transforming them, from light structures in support of creation, into museums of contemporary arts, thus substantially increasing their costs in time of financial constraints.

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