In “L’art en relation: Li diab’là une performance de Christian Bertin,” Matilde Dos Santos explores “La Rencontre” [The Meeting], an exhibition/photo installation that took place from July 18 to 23 July, 2017, on the Savane in Fort de France. The work of the Martinican artist was proposed in the framework of the 2017 Fort de France Festival by the city of Fort de France and SERMAC. Dos Santos insists that the Savane is a venue to remember for future exhibitions (she suggests heritage photos set up in the area, for example). The installation, she says, was laid out along a small paved road, making it easy for the public to view the photos while walking, stopping to get a better look, to comment, and to interact with the work. Dos Santos writes:
“La Rencontre” is a photo installation on 12 panels in corrugated sheet iron and blackened wood arranged along the Savane, starting from the seaside, just behind the statue of Esnambouc, to that of Joséphine de Beauharnais, opposite the Schoelcher Library. But it is above all about the meeting that became mythical over the years, between Christian Bertin and Aimé Césaire, and later with Christian Goussens, who allowed him to enter the School of Fine Arts in Mâcon, but also with Luc Jennepin, the creator of the beautiful photographs exhibited. The meeting of the artist with the Parisian public during the performance can be seen on one side of the installation; and that of the artist with his students, in workshops, or with spectators around works in public space, is the subject of the other side of the installation; and finally, the primordial one, a world in expansion and small pebbles of the Caribbean, the meeting of men and cultures, which, since the time of the slave trade, has never ceased to return, in a form which is often violent and unequal, and which, by the resistances it provokes, has proven to be extremely creative.
[. . .] Christian has a precise score: his wandering brings him from high point to high point of French culture, carrying with a somewhat noisy elegance, a curious object, from which he gradually extirpates fragments of Martinican culture, so absent, alas, from the places he confronts. [. . .]
For full review (in French), see https://aica-sc.net/2017/08/22/lart-en-relation-li-diabla-une-performance-de-christian-bertin/