chalon-sur-saone-france

Le Grand Tour

Musée Nicéphore Niépce

Notwithstanding the aristocratic associations of “Le Grand Tour,” this version of the post-Renaissance voyage of discovery might best be described as a postmodern, postcolonial road movie. Produced and directed by François Cheval, curator of the Musée Niépce, it featured three French artist-photographers (in order of appearance: Ange Leccia, Jean-Luc Moulène, and Patrick Tosani) who set out on the trail of their nineteenth-century predecessors in Syria, Lebanon, and Palestine with the idea of doing things differently this time around.

Establishing shot: The latter-day “tours” of Leccia, Moulène, and Tosani consisted of residencies (in Damascus, Saida, and a Palestinian refugee camp outside of Damascus, respectively) to be followed by on-site presentations of the resulting works. But the ambitious project was also to involve the “repatriation” of a portion, at least, of Middle Eastern

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