May – June 2019
For a number of years, the Regional Avignon-Provence Orchestra and the Collection Lambert have wanted to collaborate and develop the connection between music and contemporary art. In 2017, a partnership was started with workshops around the Pom’s Concerts. During these gatherings organized in the exhibition rooms of the Collection Lambert, the musicians of the Orchestra played in proximity to the works for classes of school children.
This first collaboration was followed by a second that involved organizing chamber music concerts in the museum’s rooms, held in the evening for the general public.
The partnership went on to include training sessions for teachers on contemporary approaches to music and visual arts.
In 2018-2019, the collaboration gave rise to a large-scale project bringing together a composer, an artist working with the Collection Lambert, musicians from the Orchestra, and children and adolescents.
The composer, Pascale Jakubowski, created a piece around the iconic work Heaven by Miroslaw Balka, which since being purchased by the Friends of the Collection Lambert, has been installed in the courtyard of the Hôtel de Caumont. Both women are Polish, and Jakubowski quickly found shared points of inspiration in Balka’s work.
Forty-five children and adolescents, aged 9 to 16, also participated in the process of creation. They were part of three classes: the special education class at the Grands Cyprès A primary school, a class from the Saint Michel middle school, and a class of older students from the Domaine des Possibles alternative school. This gave the students the chance to work with others from different areas and exposed to different teaching methods.
In response to the installation, they had the opportunity to express themselves verbally, with the timbre of their voices, and using visual media.
Throughout the school year, writing and sound research sessions with Jakubowski led to a collection of sounds and images that would later be incorporated in the final composition.
In May, Balka met with the students for workshops on how to use the space for their work.
To foster a connection between the classes and with the artists throughout the year, the project included an exchange of letters and other items, such as questionnaires, acrostics, photos and videos. A variety of media were used and the result is a detailed, creative correspondence. It was used to create a booklet given to the audience members when the work was performed so that this adventure could exist in a tangible format, beyond the music.
Teachers of French, history, art and math, along with documentalists, also brought their skills to the project to provide other access points to the world of artists and their work.
This unprecedented project included an educational component organized by the public relations teams of the Regional Avignon-Provence Orchestra and the Collection Lambert.
Not only were art classes set up in connection with the project and the exhibitions; events were also held around the Orchestra (Pom’s Concerts, orchestra members present at the museum for the concerts, etc.).
The concerts took place on May 29 and June 9, 2019, in the courtyard of the Collection Lambert. The musicians and the children were positioned right in Heaven, between its suspended elements.