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Exhibition at Pavillon de l’Arsenal, Paris 

Exhibition Opening

Exhibition at Pavillon de l'Arsenal, Paris 

Pavillon de l’Arsenal, 21 Boulevard Morland, Paris, IDF, France

Wednesday, June 15, 2022 at 10:00am & Sunday, August 28, 2022 at 7:00 PM

Combining urban, artistic, and social approaches, “In the Banlieues” was an exhibition that recounted pivotal moments in the history of the two cities and showcased their contributions to current urban planning practices through real-life experiences and illustrated accounts.

Featuring scientific curators Laure Gayet, urban planner, Légendes Urbaines and June A. Grant, architect, blinkLAB architecture, the exhibition highlighted individuals who catalyzed change, forged connections across communities, advocated for marginalized groups, and unveiled overlooked spaces and collaborative models. These stakeholders emphasized a human-centric approach to space-building. 

Conceived by the French-American curatorial duo Laure Gayet (Légendes Urbaines) and June A. Grant (blinkLAB architecture), the exhibition offered a three-pronged approach: a historical reinterpretation of the urban, social, and cultural development of the two cities; narratives reflecting the lived experiences of residents at the margins of mainstream society; and a French-American exploration of tools and projects addressing cultural urbanism, community dynamics, inequities, collective action, and climate justice. 

Presented concurrently in Paris, Saint-Denis, San Francisco, and Oakland, and co-produced by Pavillon de l’Arsenal in Paris and the planning agency SPUR in San Francisco, “In the Banlieues” brought together artists, urbanists, entrepreneurs, and researchers to observe how cities functioned in France and California with the shared belief that our cities must be collectively built. 

Co-produced by the French institution Villa Albertine San Francisco and the US non-profit California Humanities, the exhibition represented a new chapter in the international cooperation program initiated in 2018. This initiative had already resulted in a short documentary filmed in both cities about the role of culture in marginalized urban environments and a publication entitled “Translating Cities and Cultures.” Beginning in the summer of 2022, the program featured public exhibitions and programs spanning key moments, guided by a multidisciplinary committee comprising artists, academics, political leaders, and urban planners. 

The exhibition was co-produced by Pavillon de l’Arsenal, Villa Albertine in San Francisco, and California Humanities, in partnership with SPUR San Francisco, Maison des Sciences de l’Homme Paris Nord, with support from foundation 836M, l’Institut Français, and Fondation Art Explora, in collaboration with the cities of Oakland and Saint-Denis, Périféeries, and with the participation of ARTE. 

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