Wed, Sep 05, 2007 - Page 2 News List

Marseilles street art center seeks Taiwanese talent


The French national street art center in Marseilles would like to invite Taiwanese artists to perform in France as part of efforts to establish a global network of street art, a French cultural worker said on Monday.

Elodie Presles, a producer at the center, said however that French street art developed over a 30-year period and that while the French experience could serve as a good example for Taiwan, it would take the latter a long time before its street art truly blossoms.

Street art in France, which originated in the 1970s in the wake of the 1968 university students' social movement, provides an example for Taiwan to follow, but that experience can neither be duplicated nor copied because it takes time for any art form or culture to grow, Presles said.

The French government has played an important role in the development of street art, supporting artists and cultural events with funds from the national budget, Presles said.

The government recognizes that art and culture are invaluable national assets and encourages unemployed artists to pursue their artistic careers, she said.

Hundreds of art festivals are held around France every year, but "Rome wasn't built in a day. Most of them started out as an event of two to three groups and gradually expanded to between 100 and 300 groups today," she said.

Traditionally, city streets have been considered "second-rate" performance spaces in Taiwan, Taipei Artists Village chief executive Su Yao-hua (蘇瑤華) said.

Much as in Taiwan today, during the 1970s, street performers in France were not considered "real artists," Presles said.

Things changed in the 1980s, when graffiti, hip-hop and street acrobatics became accepted by the public as genuine art forms, she said.

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