1. Acts of Creation


The Axe 1 is coordinated by Denis LABORDE and Emmanuelle OLIVIER.

By ‘creation’ we intend here both artistic creation in the common acceptance of the term and all forms of ‘situated’ invention. On the one hand, the word characterizes those differentiated forms of engagement involved in the collaborative act of creation ; on the other hand, it signifies the product of this collective action. Crossing the trajectories of several disciplines (history, musicology, anthropology, philosophy, aesthetics), this research pole enables us to probe the fashion in which diverse spheres of art emerge from different forms of practice, and can be subdivided into three lines of interrogation.

The first axe is titled Creation, Perception, Interpretation and is centered on discussions within aesthetics in the European space (E. Décultot) of the 18th and 19th centuries : specifically, on the spaces and modes of perception shaping our experience of the museum (E. Decultot, N. Oulebsir) and concert (D. Laborde).

The second focuses on spaces of creation and addresses questions arising from urban anthropology, envisaging The City as a Stage (K. Le Bail, D. Laborde, M. Werner, C. Guiu), as well as from cultural history. The latter includes a diversity of topics within its sweep : the festival of Bayreuth (T. Giraud) ; the church as place of music (F. Gribenski) ; the production of alterity in the migration of concepts between the history of art and ethnology (M. Stavrinaki) ; the formulation of the precepts of primitivism during the period 1910-20 (H. Ivanoff) ; the invention of museums (N. Oulebsir) ; the production of musical distance in 19th century France

(I. Mayaud) ; and musical Japonism (L. Moulis). This research focus also welcomes studies on the Music of the World directed by D. Laborde and T. Bachir-Loopuyt in collaboration with some major cultural institutions : Fondation Royaumont, Cité de la Musique, Maison des Cultures du Monde, Zone Franche, Global Flux Zentrum (Cologne), and the Center for World Music (Hildesheim). With the support of the UFA, the Centre Georg Simmel holds annually, in September at Biarritz, a summer school whose goal is to address these themes.

The third line of inquiry concerns the Practices of Creation. The activity of the musician, alongside that of the dancer or actor, depends on the incorporation at an early stage of those skills which Marcel Mauss names ‘techniques of the body’. Physically binding and culturally formative, on the one hand they require technical proficiency and inculcate an ethos of striving to exceed the limitations of the self ; on the other, they encourage singularity and originality. These conventions are studied within the framework of theatrical creation in partnership with the theatre of the Bernardines (P. Judet de la Combe), and through the writings of Louis Jouvet (K. Le Bail). Our research into the practices of creation also explores the topics of the musician’s capacity for improvisation and contemporary musical creation (D. Laborde).