Dear Readers, I have never kept a diary, but I am told that neglecting entries often leads the diarist to attempt to make up for his past negligence by filling in the wide holes with a short précis absent of lived experience until the volume born to guard thoughts and still glistening impressions becomes nothing more than a grocery list notation of life— December first, first time I ate a pomegranate; October second, first time I fell in love; November fourth, had a marvelous time out dancing; September twenty-second, broken ankle; January fourth, nothing to report. I too have neglected not a diary, but a journal. I will not make the mistake of reducing my time here to a series of telegrams. Just le me say I have felt very lucky to have lived in Paris for as long as I have and that my silence is now broken.
Recently, a friend of mine, a charming Parisian who reminds me of what Madeline might be like if she grew up and left me behind the “old house in Paris that was covered with vines” to study art history, showed me around the museum where she just started working, though ‘museum’ is perhaps not quite the right word. La Chalet Society (founded by the former director of Le Palais de Tokyo, Marc-Olivier Wahler) along with the London based Museum of Everything teamed up to present an exhibition of Outsider and Folk Art whose run has been extended until February 24th. It would be perhaps unwise to credit the space on Boulevard Raspail as a museum— despite the English partner’s somewhat bombastic moniker— as La Chalet Society describes itself as, “…a new cultural project, which aims to reflect upon the contemporary art institution. As a mobile structure, its programming operates on different types of platforms and formats, a bit like an open-source software able to run on any hardware.” I’m not sure that’s really any better than a ‘museum of everything,’ but despite my misgivings on these choice words, some of the work presented is phenomenal.