The Frac Centre-Val de Loire collection features both art and radical and experimental architecture from 1950 to the present, providing insights into the world of tomorrow charted against its earliest expressions. Since 2013, it has been based in Orléans in the Subsistances Militaires site, with an extrusion of the existing building in the form of three glass excrescences – the Turbulences – by Jakob+MacFarlane.
The Frac Centre-Val de Loire holds numerous events (exhibitions, tours, public lectures, gatherings with artists and architects, work with schools, etc.) both on-site and throughout the Centre-Val de Loire region. In 2017, the Frac Centre-Val de Loire inaugurated the first edition of its Biennale d’Architecture d’Orléans – ‘walking through someone else’s dream’ – followed by a second edition in 2019, ‘our years of solitude’.
Over the next few years, the Frac Centre-Val de Loire plans to extend its public outreach policy, developing an inclusive approach of social investment and to define itself as an institution that helps to provide both public policies and the general population with a new conception of the world we live in.
If we were to describe, in a nutshell, the artistic and cultural project of a Frac such as ours, we could simply quote the poet’s words referring to the never-ending quest to ‘poetically inhabit the world’ (Hölderlin). It is a daunting challenge and, to put it mildly, one that is impossible to fulfil. For it would require every square metre of our lives to be the abode of a work or art and the haven of a thought. Yet we continue to kindle this dream.
This is why, since 2015, we have been committed to going beyond our borders to encounter otherness. Africa, the Arab world and Latin America were our destinations. This has helped us to understand that Utopia, radicalism and experimentation are less about the future than about redefining origins.
The challenge for the artistic endeavour lies in embracing the unconditional fully egalitarian status of men and women without exception, while pursuing the idea of geographical decentralisation. In line with our goals of raising awareness, gaining recognition and dissemination, we aspire to promote wholeheartedly the work of female artists and architects and to use the leverage required to put an end to their ‘invisibility’ in the history of architecture and art.
Abdelkader Damani has been director of the Frac Centre-Val de Loire since 1 September 2015.
He trained in architecture in Oran (Algeria). When he moved to France in 1993, he studied art history and philosophy at the universities of Lyon 2 and Lyon 3. After managing the art and architecture programmes at the Centre Culturel de Rencontre de la Tourette (Le Corbusier architecture), he led the ‘VEDUTA’ platform at the Lyon Biennale from 2007 to 2015. In 2014, he co-curated the Dakar Biennale (Our common future, Dak’Art 2014) and the Contemporary Arts Festival in Oujda (Ne pas se séparer du monde, Oujda 2014). As director of the Frac Centre-Val de Loire, in 2017 he created the first Biennale d’Architecture d’Orléans (walking through someone else’s dream, Orléans 2017). In 2019, he was general curator of the first Rabat Biennale (An Instant before the World, Rabat 2019) and produced the second edition of the Biennale d’Architecture d’Orléans (our years of solitude, Orléans 2019).
Mouna Jemal Siala, Ulysse de la Hafsia, 2019. Installation,Grilles métalliques, fils, photographies et collages, 220 x 550 cm. Collection FRAC Centre. ©DR
Frac Centre-Val de Loire
88 rue du Colombier
(entrée boulevard Rocheplatte)
45000 Orléans, France
T. + 33 (0)2 38 62 52 00