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Meeting Yoyo Maeght

Curator

Meeting Yoyo Maeght - illustration 1

Who better than Yoyo Maeght, exhibition curator and granddaughter of patron Aimé Maeght, to tell us about the evolution of FIAC and the art market? A regular, Yoyo was there at the fair's inception and has attended every year since. A mixture between an influencer and reporter, she shares her best picks from the art world on her Instagram account. If like us you love art in all its forms, it is THE account to follow!

Could you tell us a little more about your career?

I took the reins from my grandfather through prioritising the publishing house, always in collaboration with the artists. They are the ones who create, even making artist's multiples. At the same time, I was in charge of part of the Foundation's communications and the development of Maeght, of international market exploration but also getting new artists to join Maeght Gallery.

I like knowing artists and making multiples with them; there is a lot of consideration in multiples. They are an opportunity for the artist to revisit their work. The signature is the affirmation that they recognise the work as their own and that they are satisfied with it. They also lead artists to break away from their usual technique and meet other technicians.

You are the granddaughter of the art publisher, gallery owner and patron Aimé Maeght. Have you preserved some of your familial values?

Yes, I don't keep those of my family but those of my grandfather. Passion, audacity and above all, work. We must make sure that our audacity leads to unintended success, and we must never be any less bold.

You have applied these values during your career, do you still work with artists today? How do you envisage the future for the art market?

I have been working with the artist Aki Kuroda since he left the Maeght Gallery; he has an important career and an attentive audience. I no longer believe in the model of an art gallery in the sense of an 'open shop'. The future doesn't lie in showing artists in commercial places but in museums and art centres… It is more about being an agent who cares about their artist's career after all. The commercial side can take place online, for example on sites like Artsper, and in addition to this it is necessary to show the artist, exhibit them and organise meetings for them.

Meeting Yoyo Maeght - illustration 1
Meeting Yoyo Maeght - illustration 1

You are very connected and modern, notably in your relationship with social media. How you do you view the link between art and the internet?

It is necessary to make more and more beautiful places that aren't commercial but are on the border between art centres, museums and galleries. In addition to this, information must be disseminated online. Today, it would no longer occur to me to publish a catalogue with a circulation of 5,000 copies because only 600 people would read the biography or text inside. And even those who might be interested don't automatically have access to it. The internet is a great tool for disseminating information that can be permanently updated, everything about art has its place, including controversy. I think that the web allows something that no other media can: the dissemination of critical information that is missing today.

Also, if you look at the history of art, whatever the technical developments, artists needed to find themselves in a community (Montparnasse, Ecole de Paris, New York in the 1970s etc.). The same goes for today, but they no longer need to be physically together. Web exchanges make it possible to create an artistic community. Artists need to exchange, even if the classic photos of artists together were taken in bistros rather than workshops.

As for me, I am neither a gallery, nor a critic, nor a journalist; I am almost an influencer because I don't talk about myself but rather about other people's exhibitions. I don't belong to any specific category; I talk about films and theatre and so on too. I talk about my time without doing so intentionally; it's just what comes to mind, it's an escape. It's who I am. I have a lot of followers, and I'm surprised to reach a certain specific category: museum curators. They express themselves less; they don't post or comment, but I know that they follow me because they talk to me about it.

Which contemporary artists inspire you?

I have a deep love for painting, so I like artists who, incidentally, use paint! I thank the Chinese artists for having restored it. I look for artists with distinct features who enter art history because they make a proposal. Incidentally, that's what my grandfather did; he exhibited Chagall as well as Calder, Giacometti as well as Tàpies, and Chillida as well as Kandinsky. Giacometti said something brilliant: “I started sculpture to get sculpture over with". You must have an artistic proposal, that is what I look for today.

Meeting Yoyo Maeght - illustration 1
Meeting Yoyo Maeght - illustration 1

FIAC 2019 will take place from the 17ᵗʰ to the 20ᵗʰ October. In 3 adjectives: what do you expect?

Discovery, confirmation - especially of discoveries from previous years - and finally, community. Because that's what a community is; it's where you can find others who love the same things as you.

Do you have a lasting memory of FIAC?

I remember a FIAC where there was an enormous traffic jam because everyone in Paris was going to the opening. The designers of Studio Berçot arrived dressed in their latest creations, it was so hot that people were fainting… I even climbed on a friend's shoulders with a cutter to cut vellums!

You would see everything that was creative. I come from the generation that saw the birth of Gauthier and Alaïa… It was out of the question to go to a FIAC opening without wearing the latest Mugler.

During one FIAC, Gauthier even made me wear a neoprene wetsuit that I had on my stand. Our times now are less extravagant.

It was the end of the 1980s, the whole of New York had turned up, the European market was opening up… Everything creative was crystallising right at the time of the FIAC. We had to get artists discovered, the market was going well, everything was in order. All you had to do was show, with fantasy and audacity.

What are the must-see stands this year?

Always the first floor with the young galleries! But also the international galleries that are gradually springing up around Paris. It is interesting to see how they are going to use the FIAC, to ask them why they've set themselves up in Paris… It is formidable, some of them claim that the market is doing badly, yet galleries dream of moving to Paris!

Do you collect art yourself? Do you usually buy works at fairs?

Yes of course, and I have bought at fairs. I choose works to live with, it's very selfish after all. In general, I need to know the artist, I need the work to summarise his thoughts, to immediately make reference to them. A work of art is like a romantic relationship; you don't know why in a crowd it's that one you like. And it will only last if you keep talking… A work of art is the same: it catches our attention and then there has to be a discussion with a mixture of history of art and context. I need the artist to know what I am going to talk about with the work.


Their favourite artworks

Bert Stern, Brigitte Bardot. Saint Tropez, Photography

Bert Stern

Brigitte Bardot. Saint Tropez, 2011
13 x 18.9 x 0.4 inch
Photography

$4,403

Our recommendations Bernard Frize, Caisse, Print

Bernard Frize

Caisse, 2013
27.6 x 19.7 inch
Print

Sold out

Our recommendations Philippe Ramette, Sans titre, Photography

Philippe Ramette

Sans titre, 2015
59.1 x 47.2 inch
Photography

$21,449

Our recommendations Ettore Sottsass, L'Altare, Print

Ettore Sottsass

L'Altare, 1974
29.5 x 21.7 inch
Print

$1,118

Our recommendations Claude Viallat, Serpent, Print

Claude Viallat

Serpent, 2005
46.9 x 15.4 x 0.4 inch
Print

$1,919

Lee Bae, Sans titre n°10, Print

Lee Bae

Sans titre n°10, 2018
27.6 x 20.5 inch
Print

$2,822

Bernar Venet, Grib, Print

Bernar Venet

Grib, 2016
11 x 15.2 x 0.4 inch
Print

$3,387

Our recommendations Laurent Grasso, Studies into the past (Signed poster), Print

Laurent Grasso

Studies into the past (Signed poster), 2018
19.7 x 23.6 inch
Print

$203

Niki de Saint Phalle, Nana Power: Monster I, Print

Niki de Saint Phalle

Nana Power: Monster I, 1970
29.9 x 22 x 0 inch
Print

$3,387

Horst P. Horst, Classics -  Classic Still Life, 1937, Photography

Horst P. Horst

Classics - Classic Still Life, 1937, 2018
44.5 x 35.4 x 0.1 inch
Photography

$31,000

Claude Viallat, La Marseillaise, Painting

Claude Viallat

La Marseillaise, 1979
22.6 x 15.9 x 0.4 inch
Painting

$4,290