Irene Aristizábal takes charge of FRAC Poitou-Charentes

Until then chief curator of the Baltic Center for Contemporary Art, Irene Aristizábal becomes the new director of the Regional Contemporary Art Fund (FRAC) Poitou-Charentes, on the unanimous proposal of a jury which met on November 21, 2023 She succeeds Alexandre Bohn, who was head of the FRAC from 2007 until February 2023.

Irene Aristizábal (41 years old) holds a master’s degree in visual arts as well as a master’s degree in aesthetics and the history of art and photography at the University of Paris VIII. She also holds a master’s degree in contemporary art curating from the Royal College of Art in London.

Most of his career was spent in England. She worked at the Royal Society of Arts in London from 2007 as a project assistant in the field of arts and ecology, then directed the London art gallery Worlds End Contemporary in 2009.

Between 2010 and 2011, she briefly returned to France and took her first steps in the FRAC world by being appointed curator at the FRAC Grand Large – Hauts-de-France in Dunkirk, where she notably curated the collective exhibition “Revisiting Times / Point of no return” (2011).

Back in England, she held the position of head of exhibitions at the Nottingham Contemporary art center between 2013 and 2019, then became co-curator of the British Art Show 9 (from 2018 to 2022), a major traveling exhibition of contemporary art in the United Kingdom, organized every five years by Hayward Gallery Touring.

In 2019, she joined the Baltic Center for Contemporary Art in Gateshead, Newcastle in the north-east of England, where she was appointed chief curator and head of the artistic programming and audience development department. She places an important place on diversity and inclusion in her exhibitions, which give pride of place to contemporary female artists such as Judy Chicago (2020), Ad Minoliti (2021) and Carolina Caycedo (2022).

His project for the FRAC Poitou-Charentes, entitled “Autopoiesis and radical interdependence”, demonstrates its desire to focus on an ecological and social transition of the establishment. It also intends to promote territorial artistic production, by opening up to more collaborations.

The FRAC Poitou-Charentes is made up of two sites, one in Angoulême and the other in Linazay. The first brings together the temporary exhibition spaces, the documentation center and the administration. The second houses works from the FRAC collection, kept in museum reserves since 2009. This collection includes nearly 1,000 works of contemporary art, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, installations and photographs.

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