Today we meet Loup Trentin, young manager of the contemporary art gallery Corps & Ame, in Nimes.
It has been a few years since this gallery has offered a rich program of shows and happenings, not strangely enough, in the same territory that was named European Capital of Culture in 2013.
Monsieur Trentin reached the art world in an original way passing through the faculty of Sport Sciences and Sport’s Enterprise, and earning a double Master’s degree, one in Modern Letters and one about the art market in Montpellier.
In 2003 he has started working at Les 20 ans Nemausus, a cultural project proposed by the famous French architect Jean Nouvel, who had designed the Louvre of Abu Dhabi. Tartin then started to organize art exhibitions, working with the regional administration and several commercial partners. From that moment on it all got easier: he opened his first gallery in Montpellier in 2007 and has been working in a wonderful space in rue Jamais in Nimes since 2010.
Today we have the chance to interview Monsieur Trentin and ask him about the life of his “young” gallery in a competitive sector such as the artistic one. The key word is to be in step with time. The web, the word of mouth, the display of the showcase and the participation to fairs of contemporary art are all aspects that really lie in the Curator’s heart.
Alice Legé: Monsieur Trentin, according to your personal experience, how have the new technologies changed the world of contemporary art?
Loup Trentin: Previously clients used to rely on the gallery owner; however people now find all the information on the internet: they come into the gallery, visit the exhibition and then search for the artist on Google. This changes everything! On the one hand this increases transparency: previously, in the emerging art sector, the cases of plagiarism were more common, while today you just have to search for a work online to see that it has been made by another artist ten years ago and that it is maybe cheaper. The internet has also influenced prices. It increases the competition and it forces us to follow the trend of quotations.
Also Facebook, Twitter and the other social networks are important. Certainly, Facebook does not bring new clients in the gallery, but it increases visibility and works as an agenda for the Vernissages, helping people to remember the dates.
A.L: Internet allows us to easily , and perhaps too quickly, find images and information. How do you find your artists?
L.T: There are various ways to find new talents: you must have an eye for it, but also art fairs can provide lucky finds. Word of mouth is important too: the artists themselves have good sensibility and sometimes it could happen that a painter who has worked for me for many years suggests to me to have a look at the job of another artist who captured his attention. Finally there are spontaneous candidacies: usually only 9/10 are not interesting , but it is always worth to take a look.
A.L: Looking at your website, we noticed that there is an archive of artists grouped by trend. The “Archive” is one of the principal themes of our magazine. How much is it important for you to leave a trace of your job?
L.T: Above all the site is a showcase that allows to display the gallery’s projects. In the section called archive we show the exhibitions’ chronology, in which the public can see the artistic path and the evolution of the gallery: this should help build a sense of reliability of our work. When I work remotely, the archive is very useful in order to show the proposals of the gallery to clients and it allows me to access my job from any place of the world.
A.L: As an art curator, what is your opinion about the art of the past and the research in archives?
L.t: I really love when in a contemporary work of art you can find some references to the art of the past: it creates a good visual contrast. I believe that having an historical knowledge is fundamental, as Fernand Braudel stated “pour savoir où l’on v ail faut savoir d’où l’on vient”. It is important to preserve and defend the memory of the past and in particular the artistic knowledge of the past. The history of art is our history: the work of great artists is the reflection of the world around them.
Alice Legé is an History of Art’s student based in Milan. Ancient art lover, she’s open to contemporary contamination. She worked in some galleries of art in Milan and in Nîmes, France. She’s now leading to a Modern Art History degree in the University Statale in Milan, discussing a thesis on French and Italian art’s critic during the XIX century.
This post is also available in: Italian