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A Meeting of Minds: Part 2

After a lovely three hour train ride from Paris, I arrived in the city center of Geneva for the annual Artgenève art fair. Having over 80 galleries and artistic institutions present, the fair was an exciting place to see some of the newest and emerging artists in europe. It was also a chance to meet more of my coworkers and collaborators on Archivorum Ark, including the other two artists building an archive- Nil Yalter and Babs Haenen. As stated in my last post, Nil was working with Anaïs for her archive, and I had the opportunity to see her work in person for the first time in Paris, but meeting the artist was truly special. With a firecracker personality and a diverse and long standing career, listening to Nil speak with her fellow artists was something an archivist could only dream of. I was also able to be present when Nil spoke at Musée d'art moderne et contemporain (MAMCO) about her installation work, Exile is a hard job, in conversation with Anaïs

My favorite parts of the trip were in the taxis to and from the fair, as I was able to hear the artists talk freely amongst themselves. Babs was always ready to share an anecdote about her life and work that kept the conversation fresh and free flowing. It was in these taxi rides that we had some of our most engaging conversations. From discussions of the economy, the art world of the 70s, and the upcoming archive, it was a collaborative salon experience of sorts. In our off-time between meetings, dinners, and the fair itself, I was able to meet with Belen again. While the archive work has been mostly solo since my time in Portugal, seeing eachother again reinvigorated the drive to work. Focused on our eventual publication, me and Belen were able to go through our materials and start to devise a plan of action (but more on that later…)

Our trip culminated at our open chat at Artgenève. This speaking opportunity was the first chance for us to address the public and discuss our work. I found it important to highlight the unique experience of being able to archive three women artists while they were still alive and able to answer our questions about their work. Overall, I thought our chat went swimmingly, and we were able to tell the public our goals and hopes for the future of the project.

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