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From Exotic Curiosities to Primitivism

*Switch language to french for french version of the article*

This article was first written for the catalogue of the Bourgogne Tribal show's third edition in 2018.

"You walk towards Auteuil you want to go home on foot
To sleep among your Oceanic and Guinean fetishes
They are Christs of another shape and another creed."
Guillaume Apolinaire, « Zone », 1913.

These lines by poet Guillaume Apollinaire testify to his early interest in non-European art. The year was 1913, on the eve of the First World War, and his famous collection of poems Alcools, had just been published. Apollinaire did not know then that the West was about to change the way it looked at Pacific objects. This metamorphosis would deeply mark the history of the arts and ethnographic museums. Read More