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Robert Milin works on the principle that the ordinary is invisible, that it holds the key to the poetic, but that it is lost the moment we attempt to study it. And so we must let things and people go about their business, approaching them empathetically, unaffectedly, as if we aren’t even there. This is why the camera in Milin’s work is frontal and the backdrop neutral: for paradoxically this is how the camera is best forgotten. In "French Rail Ticket Checkers" the subjects are having breakfast; in "Veni, Veni, Veni" livestock breeders in France’s Quercy region call to their animals in the local patois. Here the artist settles for the bare minimum, and this is how he reveals the intensity of relationships. For Veduta/Biennale de Lyon, Milin used a residency in Lyon and neighbouring Vénissieux to create a work titled "My Name Means September". Roaming the city, he noted expressions overheard and built them into lightboxes of which seven can be seen in Lyon 8, three in Vénissieux and two at La Sucrière, and one at the Veduta forum.
Robert MILIN
Veni, Veni, Veni, 2005
Photos: Blaise Adilon
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Veduta project

Living contemporary art

In partnership with the various local actors, Veduta is devising and producing a great variety of events: artist residencies, artwork production, concerts, exhibitions, lectures, colloquia and performances in both unexpected and conventional venues.

Veduta aims to shake up the classic scheme of cultural mediation, which has traditionally comprised four actors: artwork, venue, mediator and audience. Veduta reflects a desire to break away from the gestural language of habitual cultural behaviours. For instance, should one stand silently before a work of art? Nothing could be less certain: on 5 July, on Place du 8 Mai 1945, a square in the Etats-Unis district of Lyon’s eighth arrondissement, Elshopo handed out pancakes silkscreened with a chocolate portrait of Michael Jackson. In the same quarter, since 15 May, Robert Milin has been walking up and down staircases in residential blocks on Rue Arrachart and gleaning expressions that he then transforms into “urban signage” in the form of lightboxes fixed to walls of buildings. During the same period, Eko Nugroho camped at La Maison Carmagnole in southern Vaulx-en-Velin. After spending a month with youngsters from this Lyon suburb, he staged L’arc-en-ciel sous la pierre at the open-air Théâtre de Verdure on 18 June… On 8 October and 2 December, with the ENS graduate training school, Veduta is staging a colloquium with a promising title (“The Future of the Everyday”), to be held in Sarkis’s artwork at MACLyon. At a later date, in the same venue, Veduta will ask whether it is still possible to be foreign? Every week from September to December, a couple will spend a night at the Biennale; Veduta’s after-sales service will run a hotline every Wednesday afternoon to answer all the questions you never dared ask about contemporary art. In October, Veduta will install an exhibition at the swimming baths in Décines, while Xu Zhen’s vehicle and the reconstruction of the car of notorious French gangster Jacques Mesrine – recently the subject of a biopic – will be on show at the Charlie Chaplin Centre in Vaulx-en-Velin …

Veduta is choosing to take “The Spectacle of the Everyday” literally and apply it to five themes: making, eating, inhabiting, talking and thinking – ordinary activities shared by all. But the idea here is, of course, to Make, Eat and Inhabit Art, and to Talk and Think About Art.


Making contemporary art

Artist Residencies
Le Forum
Three-Sided Football


Inhabiting contemporary art

Rendez-vous Chez Soi
Une Nuit à la Biennale
Les Weekends du Forum


Eating contemporary art

Rendez-vous au Marché
“Pain Peint”



Talking about contemporary art

Le SAV de Veduta
Les Ambassadeurs
ECC (Etat Civil Contemporain)


Thinking about contemporary art

Ongoing Forum in Sarkis’s Artwork
Outreach classe
Café debates



Les partenaires de la biennale

The Biennale of Lyon is a Les Biennales de Lyon event

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