FRIDAY MAY 21, 2021
11:30 AM (EDT) 

Jessica Minier

Doctoral candidate, Université du Québec en Outaouais (UQO)

Charles Le Brun’s Physiognomic Drawings and the Mirrors of the Louvre: Popular Appropriation of the King’s collections in a Revolutionary Context (in French)

Constant Bourgeois, View of the Gallery of Apollo in the Louvre with a drawing exhibition (around 1797)
Credit: RMN-Grand Palais, Paris, Art Resource, New York
Although technology is making the public’s processes of identification with works more visible, one must not disregard the historical precedents. The apparatuses of the revolutionary period were able to incite, intentionally or not, an interaction between the represented bodies and the bodies present in the exhibition spaces. This is the case for the exhibition of drawings by grand masters presented in 1797 at the Musée central des arts (now the Louvre Museum). In the exhibition room, mirrors where embedded in the walls. Spontaneously, the visitors used them to compare their own faces to Charles Le Brun’s physiognomic drawings. Cognizant that the objective of this first exhibition of the King’s art collections was to enable the public to reappropriate it, this presentation will demonstrate that this “incorporalization” of the drawings is a source of identification and that it stimulates the reappropriation of collections in a highly unstable, yet consequential political context.

Jessica Minier is a doctoral candidate in museology at UQO. She is interested in the joint acquisition of artworks, by two or several museum institutions, as a new mode of musealization. Her Master’s research, funded by FRQSC and the SSHRC, examined participative curating, more specifically as it pertains to the inclusion of the public in the exhibition development process. Jessica Minier is currently a research assistant to Professor Mélanie Boucher in the SSHRC-funded research group The origin and currentness of the subject's becoming object: recreating oneself at the museum and in exhibitions as well as in the Groupe de recherche et de réflexion CIÉCO : Collections et impératif évènementiel/The Convulsive Collections. She also works at the Galerie UQO as an assistant director and communications officer.