Published on June 21st, 2021 | by Laurence de Valmy0
Art Explora, a foundation for sharing culture
“Art is essential to everyone’s life, but inequalities in access to creation are still too present. I create Art Explora to take up this major challenge: to share culture with as many people as possible.” It is this conviction that motivated Frédéric Jousset, the French entrepreneur and patron, to create in November 2019 Art Explora, a philanthropic foundation with international ambition, nomadic, without collection and digital. Despite its recent creation, Art explora has already implemented and completed many projects including the support of the JR Chronicles exhibition and the foundation was chosen to represent culture at the France Pavilion of the Universal Exhibition in Dubai, from October 1. 2021 to March 31, 2022.
We met Léa Forget, Head of communication and digital marketing, who shared the mission and projects of the foundation.
Cover Photo: Migrants, Mayra, Picnic across the border, Tecate, Mexico – U.S.A., 2017 – courtesy of Art Explora
Hello Léa Forget. Can you tell us about the founder and the team of Art Explora?
Lea Forget. The foundation was born from the passion of Frédéric Jousset who is very involved in the cultural world. He quickly took on Bruno Julliard, who is the director of the foundation. I myself was immediately seduced by these projects. The team is now made up of ten people and 800 volunteers.
What are Art Explora’s projects?
LF: The primary objective is to make culture accessible to as many people as possible, which is of course ambitious! Concretely, we are working on certain projects, more intended for cultural professionals, museums, associations and others intended for the general public. In the first category, I can cite the European Art Explora Prize – Beaux Arts Academy which rewards initiatives by three European museums to develop access to the museum. Last year, the MUCEM, the Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum in Madrid and the National Gallery in London won the first prize with a total of 150,000 euros in prize money.
The second, aimed at artists, is our residency program in Paris on the site of the international city of arts in Montmartre. We have renovated this place and there are 8 workshops in a fairly magical place. We hosted a first session of artists from all over the world, with varied backgrounds. The only criterion being to work on projects which question the link between art, science, technology. The second session will arrive at the beginning of September and there are open days of July 2nd, 3rd and 4th.
And for projects aimed at the general public?
LF: We have roaming projects with a museum truck in partnership with “Musée Mobile” and the Center Pompidou. It will therefore be works from the Center Pompidou that will reach out to the public, in particular schools. The first exhibition will be on the theme “animals come out of their reserve.” Art Explora also contributes by organizing meetings with artists on certain stages, by creating innovative educational material to accompany. We have another emblematic project of the Art foundation Explora proposing to make art and culture travel on the seas of the world which will soon be unveiled.
Digital is one of the foundation’s flagship tools. For example, you are a partner of the Museum Week event, and you are launching soon a digital platform What will be its content?
LF: Our digital platform project Art Explora Academy (launch September 2021 Editor’s note) gives access to the history of art with 11 courses, free and open to all (in French and English) ), with for example, the Renaissance, the Middle Ages or Asia. Each course will include videos, information, small quizzes and at the end a certification from the University of the Sorbonne. Part of this platform will be to aggregate content that already exists in order to offer even more content to users, according to their interests.
You have nearly 800 volunteers who support Art Explora’s mission. What are the roles of these volunteers?
LF: There are several strands of action, ranging from brainstorming workshops on the foundation’s projects to solidarity missions like Allo Miro. For the latter, the volunteers call residents in nursing homes and they discuss a work, read a text on this work, which gives rise to very impactful discussions. Finally, some volunteers also participate in the preselection of files on the prize, or in itinerant projects. Our volunteers are currently mostly French in metropolitan France and we want to develop the international aspect.