International

Introduction
& Contributions (International publications & symposiums)


Alexandre Castant is a French essayist on contemporary arts, and in his books he tackles the aesthetic and poetic relationships between the arts, notably the connections between sound arts and visual arts. Holder of a doctorate in aesthetics from the University of Paris I (Panthéon-Sorbonne), he teaches aesthetics and the history of the contemporary arts at the National School of Art (ENSA) in Bourges. He also runs a sound creation workshop : L’Atelier sonore d’esthétique which can be translated as The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics.
More information about this workshop at : http://ateliersonoredesthetique.ensa-bourges.fr
He is also an art critic, member of International Association of Art Critics.

He has published the following books :


Aesthetics of the Images, André Pieyre de Mandiargues’ Novels, 2001.
This first book, which was the publication of his thesis, was published by the Sorbonne. The subject was the work of the French surrealist writer and poet André Pieyre de Mandiargues — who was deeply concerned by the question of visual arts and images — and how the writer could explore images in words. Therefore, Aesthetics of the Images, André Pieyre de Mandiargues’ Novels was an essay on aesthetics, rhetorical and symbolic images in literary texts by this author. From the beginning, Alexandre Castant’s field of research has always been Comparative Aesthetics.

Black and White by Man Ray, 2003.
He then wrote a book about Man Ray, the photographer who was also a painter and an experimental film-maker.

The Photography in the Eye of Translations, 2004.
In 2004, he published an essay on the aesthetics of photography and its links with other arts such as literature, cinema, contemporary music…

Planets of Sound, 2007 & 2010.
In 2007, he published Planètes sonores, radiophonie, arts, cinema which can be translated as Planets of Sound : Radiophonics, Arts, Cinema an essay on the aesthetics and the history of sound in visual arts. This last book, Planets of Sound : Radiophonics, Arts, Cinema was liked by the readers as soon as it was published and had very good reviews in the press.
Sound is now recognised as a vital creative component in art and this book offers a fragmentary yet precise transhistorical analysis of its role in three fields : radiophonics, the visual arts and cinema.
Firstly radiophonics : a very present yet very discreet form, radiophonics makes our relationship with the world of sound something at once collective and private, as well as highly imaginative. An initial spatiotemporal approach is presented via Pierre Schaeffer’s adaptations of literary works and Abraham Moles’ speculations on acoustics. 
Next come the visual arts and the role of sound therein. From dialogue between the arts to the utopian machines of the eighteenth century, from Symbolism to the historic avant-gardes of the interwar years, from Futurism to Fluxus, from the audiovisual domain to the connections between rock and the visual arts, from a politics of sound to the question of the inaudible ; not to mention noise, listening, silence, the voice, music, the musical imaginative realm and how to convey it : all these things traverse the history of modern and contemporary art – but most importantly they summarise it. The book updates this summary, not so much with any pretensions to exhaustiveness – a tricky task given the immediacy of the subject – but with the aim of highlighting its underlying ideas and concepts and demonstrating their interrelationship.
Thirdly, a sound-based aesthetics of the cinema offers a new reading of modernism and cinema modernity. From Eisenstein to Welles, from Bresson to Bergman and Antonioni, and, in monographic chapters, from Alain Robbe-Grillet to Jean-Luc Godard : here the sound experience is interpreted as a series of crises, of conflicts with the image which, in the final analysis, have opened the cinema up to the fresh horizons of video and Contemporary art.
Three domains, then – radiophonics, art, cinema – and an exploratory trip to the planets of creativity in sound which they reveal. Food for thought and perception, but also for testing out the business of coming to grips with sound in writing and the cross-disciplinary issues this inevitably raises : how, then, to write (about) sound ? From the symbolic point of view, films by Jean Cocteau ( Orpheus, 1950) and David Lynch (Lost Highway, 1997) look like mirrors (of each other, in some respects): firstly for developing the notion of “necrophonics” – the noise of the beyond, the beyond of noise – which the book dips into; and secondly and more generally, for singing the praises of the cross-disciplinarity in art. Transitions between sound, image and text, and the transition from one world to another. Tami Amit’s cover photo for Planets of Sound can be seen as a discreet tribute to these films ; or better still, as echoing them.
[After selling out its first printing (2007), Planets of Sound has been reissued in a new, revised edition, (2010) with an epilogue devoted in part to composer/musician John Zorn].
        
ImagoDrome, Mental Images in Contemporary Art, 2010.
In 2010, he published a collective book about mental images in contemporary art. This research tries to forge pathways from arts to cognitive sciences.

Logic of the Globe, notes on Mediterranean Landscape, 2012.
The subject of this brief essay is the mediterranean landscape conceived as a “ platform ” for trans-aesthetics studies… It also includes images by Florence Chevallier, Jean-Luc Godard, Bernard Guillot, François Méchain, Corinne Mercadier, Jean-Daniel Pollet, Bernard Plossu.

Snow Screens, 2014.
« Alexander Castant, essayist and art critic, brings in Snow Screens articles, interviews and columns on photography. These art critics, published in journals or related exhibits were seized in the movement of a specific evolution, the past twenty years (1992-2013), that is to say in the passage film to digital, or, to put it another way, these texts accompanying the photograph to the era of dematerialization of its supports.
Furthermore, these texts were mostly published in the specialized press, Snow Screens opens a reflection on the status of art journalism today, the latter being also engaged with the mutations, contemporary inherent to digital. Accompanied its evolution - as in a mirror - the historical movement of photography.
Snow Screens introduces the challenges of contemporary photographic image developing in three parts : image and political, relations between photography and the arts, and, finally, the image and the digital world, transparent, infinity... As to the second part of the book - which therefore concerns the relationship between photography and the arts - it is based strictly on the previous books where Alexander Castant were precisely studied the relationship between literature, art and sound design visuals. »
in The Eye of Photography - The Daily Magazine of Photography, april 2014.


Audio Diary, Radiophonics, Arts, Cinema, 2016 & Sound Arts - Sound and Contemporary Art, 2017.
Audio Diary, Radiophonics, Arts, Cinema, and then Sound Arts - Sound and Contemporary Art are respectively published in 2016 and 2017. They compose a History or Art and complete the research proposed by Planets of Sound (2007). These three essays can be treated as a trilogy about the experience of sound in contemporary art, field of research in which the author has been working since the nineties :
« Between introduction and panorama of sound practices in contemporary art, Alexandre Castant (French art critic, essayist, teacher, author of Planètes Sonores published by Monografik in 2007 & 2010 and Journal audiobiographique published by Scala in 2016) proposes with Les Arts sonores (in French only), an inventory of sound issues in contemporary art. A field of artistic experimentation extremely fertile, inventive and stimulating since the 2000’s, and which also has a genealogy in the history of art that this book also relates, is at the same time presented in Les Arts sonores point historical, thematic, conceptual and aesthetic. Image-sound relations, correspondences and photo-phonography, the representation of musical instruments and post-rock plasticity, radio (device, fiction), body and voice, space and sonic sculptures, soundscapes and field recording, but also sound and visual machines, vinyl records and audio cassettes, or a sound society (critical, media, political) or intangible listening (the four elements, necrophony, silence , emptiness, immateriality ...) are so many notions of sound in contemporary art that, finally, approach, irrigate and respond, in this book-manifest, to the question : ” What is sound art ? ” » (translated by Transcultures, Charleroi, Belgium, 2017).


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He has taken part in the following international publications & symposiums :

2017

CHARLEROI BELGIUM
Lecture : « Audio Art, Radio and Archives »
Library PointCulture


2016

ATHENS GREECE
Article : « Demesthene Agrafiotis (poet, photographer, philosopher) »
VAKXIKON.GR

MONS BELGIUM
Lecture : « An History of Sound Art »
Academy of Arts


2015


HEIDELBERG-BERLIN GERMANY
Preface : « Mirages by Tami Amit » in Tami Amit, Insomnia, Kehrer Verlag

MONS BELGIUM
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
Festival Citysonic

HONG KONG CHINA
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
The French May - Hong Kong Arts Center

BRUXELLES BELGIUM :
Article : « In the Mons Maze… City Sonic, A Sound History of the 21st Century »
in City Sonic, Sound Arts in the City, Edited by Philippe Franck,
La Lettre Volée

2014

SHANGHAI CHINA
Workshop : « Sound Map of a City »
SIVA/Shanghai Institute of Visual Art

SHANGHAI CHINA
Lecture : « An History of Sound Art »
ECNU/East China Normal University

SHANGHAI CHINA
Lecture & Workshop : « Sound Map of a City »
XiYiTang/École offshore

2013

MONS BELGIUM
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
Festival Citysonic

2012

MONTREAL CANADA
Lecture : « The Story of Sounds of the Wind »
UQÀM - UNIVERSITY OF QUEBEC IN MONTREAL

MONTREAL CANADA
Lecture : « Passages (images, texts, sounds), the Migrations of Listening »
UQÀM - UNIVERSITY OF QUEBEC IN MONTREAL

MONS BELGIUM
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
Festival Citysonic

BASEL SWITZERLAND
Lecture : « Icons of Art. Artist Talk with Marie-Jo Lafontaine »
Art-Basel, Rolls-Royce Artist Talks

ÜBERLINGEN  GERMANY
Preface : « The happy melancholy of future flowers, images, fictions » in Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Alice in Wonderland, Villa Larix

2011

MONS BELGIUM
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
Festival Citysonic

BRUGES BELGIUM
Preface : « Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Dance The World ! », J. P. De-Paepe Publisher

LONDON ENGLAND
Article : « The Openness of Possibilities : Visual Freedom and Radio Listening », RADIAUTEUR, Goldsmiths University, n°1

BRUSSELS BELGIUM
Preface : « Marie-Jo Lafontaine », FORUM, n°186

2010

LUXEMBOURG
Lecture : «  Planets of sounds, new langages ? » Museum of Modern Art Grand-Duc Jean - MUDAM

POZNAN POLAND
Article : « Marie-Jo Lafontaine : Sound space and fictional space in The World Starts Every Minute », Mediations Biennale Poznan

BRUSSELS BELGIUM
Article : « Interview with Anne-Laure Chamboissier and Philippe Franck : The Sound Poetry and its Exhibition», L’ART MÊME, no 48

GENEVA SWITZERLAND
Article : « Christian Marclay : sound, music and visual arts (about Up and Out) », Retour d’y Voir, nos 3/4, MAMCO Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art

PORTO PORTUGAL
Article : « Cornelius Cardew and the Freedom of Listening : An Interview with L. Gablier, D. Inkster e J.-J. Palix», Galeria da Culturgest - Fundaçao Caixa Geral de Depositos

2009

LE LOCLE SWITZERLAND
Lecture : « Planets of Sounds »
Museum of Fine-Arts

LE LOCLE SWITZERLAND
Preface : « Alexandre Joly’s Soundscapes »
Museum of Fine-Arts Press

BRUSSELS BELGIUM
Preface : « Thinking the World »
French Ambassade/Monografik Publisher

2008

TAIPEI TAIWAN
Lecture : « Contemporary Art in France»,
National University of the Arts – School of Fine Arts

MONS BELGIUM
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of Aesthetics »
Festival City Sonics

2007

PUZIH TAIWAN
Exhibition : « The Sound Workshop of AEsthetics »
Toko University

WARSAW POLAND
Article : « The Question of Photography »
Camera Obscura, n° 1

AARHUS DENMARK
Text : « The utopia of images in André Pieyre de Mandiargues’s Works »
Aarhus University Press

2006

MONTREAL CANADA
Editorial Team : « Gilles Deleuze’s cinema »
CINéMAS — University of Montréal, vol. 16/nos 2-3

BERLIN GERMANY
Article : « Images, sounds, texts : Translation of signs »
http://www.transversale.org

BRUSSELS BELGIUM
Article : « Interview with Philippe Franck : The Sounds of Cities »
L’ART MÊME, n° 31

2004

AARHUS DENMARK
Lecture : « André Pieyre de Mandiargues, the utopia of images as a challenge to litterature ».
Language, Litterature and Cultural Institute — Department of Classical and Roman Studies
2003

LECCO ITALY
Article : « New Medias : Words, Bodies and Digital Images » : Karenina.it Experimental
http://xoomer.virgilio.it/kareninazoom/kareninarivista.html

2002

LUXEMBOURG
Lecture : « The Idea of Photography »
The University of Luxembourg

WARSAW POLAND
Article : « The Question of Photography »
FOTOGRAFIA, n° 9

1999

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Preface : « Mirror, Process, Medias, Photography as a Critical Art »
Museum of Contemporary Art Press

1998

VILNIUS LITUANIA
Lecture : « Contemporary Photography in France »
School of Fine Arts

BERLIN GERMANY
Text : « Mandiargues as a Critical Art »
Lendemains — The Technical University of Berlin, nos 91-92

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Article : « Bernard Guillot : Back to New York »
CAMERA OBSCURA, Summer, n° 38

GENEVA SWITZERLAND
Article : « Jacques Bélat : Backward Images », SEPIA

1997

LUXEMBOURG
Lecture : « Aesthetics of Sounds »
The University of Luxembourg

LUXEMBOURG
Preface : « Immaterial Images, Sounds, Worlds… Or What We Have Lost (text written with Christian Gattinoni) »
Casino — Forum for Contemporary Art Press

TALLINN ESTONIA
Preface : « The Power of Images : The Mutation of War ? »
Biennal of Saaremaa Press

VIENNA-ATHENS, AUSTRIA-GREECE
Article : « What is a Citizenship ? »
Odyssee Today Press

1996

VEVEY SWITZERLAND
Member of the Jury of the Diploma
High School of Photography

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Exhibition & Preface : « Motionless Variety »
French Institut

1995

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Lecture : « Olga Kaloussi’s Polaroïd Photographs between Photographs and Fine Arts »
Galery Zita Mi

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Preface : «  Olga Kaloussi : The Image in flight »
Schema & Chroma Publisher

BERLIN GERMANY
Text : « André Pieyre de Mandiargues’s view and The Photography »
Lendemains — The Technical University of Berlin, Spring, n° 77

MADRID SPAIN
Article : « Emptiness in Translation », FOTOGRAFIAS, n° 10

1993

ALMERIA SPAIN
Lecture : « André Pieyre de Mandiargues’s Photographic Vision »
The Complutense University of Madrid

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Preface : « Contract of a Broken Picture »
EnTOMO Publisher

TURIN ITALY
Preface : « Bernard Plossu : Visions of the South with Children »
Fifth International Biennal of Photography

1992

THESSALONIKI GREECE
Lecture : « Barcelona in La Marge by André Pieyre de Mandiargues and Photographs of Manel Esclusa and Joan Fontcuberta »
The Aristote University




 


© alexandre castant | 2011