Curator :
Célia Bernasconi

Musée Jean Cocteau
Quai Napoléon III
06500 Menton
T +33(0)4 93 57 72 30
www.menton.fr

Palais de l’Europe
8 Avenue Boyer
06500 Menton
T +33(0)4 92 41 76 66
www.menton.fr

June 24th – October 10th 2011

The exhibition will be
accompanied by a series of
video art works selected by
Documents d’artistes


Open every day but tuesday
and some holidays
from 10am to 12am and
from 2pm to 6pm.

Eric Duyckaerts et Jean-Pierre Khazem, The Dummy’s Lesson, 2000, Collection FRAC Languedoc- Roussillon, © Eric Duyckaerts

Eric Duyckaerts et Jean-Pierre Khazem, The Dummy’s Lesson, 2000, Collection FRAC Languedoc- Roussillon, © Eric Duyckaerts

Jean Cocteau Museum
Montrer sa nuit en plein jour
-Showing darkness in the light-

In Autumn 1959, Jean Cocteau shot the film Le Testament d’Orphée (Orpheus’ Testament) – subtitled Ne ne demandez pas pourquoi (Don’t ask me why) in the quarries of Les Baux de Provence and at the Victorine Studios in Nice. Defending his right to complete artistic liberty, this film consists of the artist filming himself as he wanders about in space and time, in search of an improbable identity. As a prologue to the film, he provides viewers with the following words: “My film is nothing but a strip-tease, little by little I remove my body and reveal my naked soul. There is a considerable shadowy audience, hungry for this truth that is truer than true which will one day be the symbol of our age”.
Inspired by Cocteau’s cinematic manifesto, the main figures of the French Nouvelle Vague went on to produce films concerned with the symbolic baring of the soul of the artist. In a disturbing confrontation with their doubles, artists challenge their own identity and invite us to rethink the status of the filmed work, navigating between reality and fiction. Brice Dellsperger, Eric Duyckaerts, Virginie Le Touze and Ian Simms place themselves in front of the camera and attempt to illustrate the function Cocteau assigned to poetry: Showing darkness in the light. The revelation of the deepest darkest self to the world…