Directed by Daniel Soutif,
When the exhibition Color Line was programmed at the museum on quai Branly, it did not necessarily reflect current events, if we excluded the repeated police brutality towards African-Americans. Following the election of Donald Trump and the emergence of “White Supremacists” and the perspective of an ultra-conservative attorney general from Alabama (Jeff Sessions), it takes on a visionary dimension: History has taught us that it loves to repeat itself. The catalogue explains in detail what this Color Line is, the line of segregation, and how it came to be following a somewhat encouraging event (the victory of the North in the American Civil War and the abolition of slavery). The sinister embodiment of “Separate But Equal”, the long struggle of WEB Du Bois and Martin Luther King Jr, the anonymous or publicized heroes (Rosa Parks) nourished the inspiration of ostracized artists for over a century, artists who over the last decades have met an accelerated recognition in terms of visibility as well as the unavoidable market value. The Ku Klux Klan and the groups of Alt-Right have once again taken on a conquering attitude: the exhibition was aimed to be a retrospective, let us hope it does not become premonitory.
Review published in the newsletter #455 - from 12 January 2017 to 18 January 2017