Collectionner. Déclinaison des pratiques, vue de la section « Des disparitions d’œuvres » section view, Galerie Leonard & Bina Ellen, Université Concordia, Montréal, 2010.
photo : Paul Litherland
When one looks up what the word ephemeral doesn’t mean or suggests — its negative face, so to speak — a few of the terms that come up are the following: definitive, durable, eternal, immortal, interminable, permanent, perpetual or stable. Even though durable evokes progressiveness because of its ecological inflections today, none of these terms, in relation to contemporary art production, curatorial practice and their relationship with the environment of the gallery are particularly desirable when envisaging a critical and reflexive practice. 

What defines the ephemeral — that is, what has a status of limited temporality or an undetermined one; what is disappearing, has disappeared or will disappear or what is lost— can be made to inflect one’s frame of reference and also be used as a tool to help one articulate such a reflexive practice.

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This article also appears in the issue 72 - Curators

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