Seminar during the festival Inspire and the exhibition Effective Spaces, in the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art in Thessaloniki, february 2015.
Pierre Labat’s speech followed thereafter, in which he contributed his thoughts concerning the concept of effective space in artistic creation, correlating it with writing and suggesting that painting is already an installation:
“The artist lies between religion and science, as he has to be more practical than religion but also more poetic than science – thus we are constantly found between these two places. As artists we are simultaneously builders and architects. I mean that we think of an object and we construct it. I will make a reference here to Merleau Ponty’s book Eye and mind in which the author quotes a phrase by Paul Valery: "the painter is he who bears their body into the world". For me, the idea is that before the artist arrives there is nothing, nothing on the table, nothing on the wall, and when he leaves there is something, a natural object. What is the effective space of a book? For me, maybe because I am not a writer, this effective space lies within the book, within the mind. And it is a very powerful space. However, the effective space of an art work I believe we do not know where it lies, because we do not enter an art work, it is an external object. And I am impressed by how, us people, meet, in an intellectual way, in an external object, in an object that lies outside our body, and despite all that we meet inside it. Hence, the effective space of an art work does not lie within the work – you do not go into the art work, but you share your time and converse around it. Hence the effective space of the art work is the place where the art work lies and thus, in this moment, it is the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art. Maybe it is not the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, but the idea of the museum”.