Guest program — Pictures Generation

Wednesday 5 July 2023 at 7 pm

Sensational: a few films from the Pictures Generation

"I wrote L’Attitude de la Pictures Generation – Excès, passion et manipulation in recognition of the fact that artists who reproduce images from advertising and cinema are often portrayed as preferring copying to invention, and are therefore seen as alternatives to expressivity. Yet their work is made up of imagery designed to affect, fascinate, or arouse desire.

Joined by Clara Guislain, an art history specialist working on art from the 1980s in the United States, this talk will screen and discuss a selection of films and videos made between 1975 and 1981 by several Pictures Generation artists at the start of their careers. We'll be looking at some of the short films of Jack Goldstein made by using the technical resources he rented from Hollywood studios, producing stunning scenes devoid of narrative; a fable brought to the screen by Ericka Beckman in a deluge of music, songs, and experimental tricks, a kind of music video before its time; and a trailer made by Barbara Bloom to stir the imagination and the desire to know more.

This selection highlights one of the elements that animated the Pictures Generation from the outset: the desire to infiltrate the circulation of images in order to exploit their emotional effects."

— François Aubart


The Guest Program of the Fondation Pernod Ricard is an open and flexible space for programming that both continues and deepens the activities of the Foundation and its Bookshop. Composed of a variety of invitations echoing the ideas and forms that drive current contemporary art and publishing, the program offers a wide range of events that transcend national boundaries: book launches, discussions and performances alongside more regular meetings at thematic workshops focusing in particular on artists' practices, self-publishing, graphic design and translation.

François Aubart is an art critic, independent curator, and publisher. He has just published L'Attitude de la Pictures Generation - Excès, passion et manipulation (Presses du réel, 2023). He currently teaches art history and theory at the École nationale supérieure d'arts de Paris-Cergy and is co-founder of the publishing house Même pas l'hiver.

Clara Guislain has a PhD in art history, is an art critic, and independent curator. Her thesis focuses on the pedagogy of the California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles and its influence on a generation of artists emerging in the early 1980s. She has published articles in journals such as Marges, Proteus and DECOR, and taught as an ATER at the Université Aix-Marseille and the Université Paris Est Marne-la-Vallée.

Ericka Beckman, Out of Hand, 1980 © Ericka Beckman.
Ericka Beckman, Out of Hand, 1980 © Ericka Beckman.

François Aubart

Clara Guislain

Fondation Pernod Ricard
1 cours Paul Ricard
75008 Paris
Free entrance
Free admission, without reservation