The French Schools pavilion: The Ninth School
The Students pavilion in Prague is the outcome of a long creation process that began in October 2018 at the Nanterre-Amandiers theatre.
From the idea of an island emerged the one of mobility, of travel, which led to a mobile scenography, a transformed truck, a meeting point inside the Students Exhibition hall.
The team wrote its intention onto the truck:
The Ninth School – Year Zero
What is a school of scenography? What can a school do?
Between utopia and fiction a group comes together – learning from diversity, feeding on the knowledge of others, and trying to imagine and invent together.
But for such a blended school to exist, what form is adequate for it to take? A form that goes beyond the usual fixedness of learning spaces and the separations already existing between our schools? Can we not invent a school with no fixed space, without the need to define itself and delineate its territory, but one that only works when in motion? A school of mobility, that moves and is constantly allowed to shift.
Its journey begins at the Théâtre Nanterre-Amandiers where the first meetings took place, as well as our first movements. Each of us had moved a bit – in our conception of scenography, in our expectations, in our ways of doing – during the past few months in contact with others: other students, other contexts, other counterparts (a scenographer, a dramatist, a director, a workshop leader, a public relations director, etc.). A movement that seems like a force, a dynamic to retain rather than a simple transition to overcome. Devising, in turn, a school that flows, gives space to bifurcation, and accepts to follow various paths.
(A school that claims to be transient, in transit)
Itinerancy as the thought of a craft. As the scenographer moves, adapts, comprehends spaces, absorbs their data to transform them into new spatiality.
Such a school should have movement as method, porosity as quality, and infinite metamorphoses as sole finality. As a living organ, it attracts foreign bodies, ingests them and transforms them into new sustenance.
Our school possess, in this, its own vital organs – a brain, a space for record keeping and executive function, and an intestine, “the second brain”, a space for sensory comprehension and sensitive perception.
This school’s body comes from the materials provided in the spaces it inhabits.
Materials that are recovered, reused differently, transformed and opened up to new uses. They become – as well as the body that forms the whole – carriers of new narratives that generate new forms.
Both moving van and revived organism, returning from a semi-real, semi-fictive journey, the “9th School” does not come to a start or stop at Prague, but to a new step, a moment’s pause to start anew and to move toward contact with new connections. To make of this body a space both fixed and in motion, open and inviting. Each day, new proposals can be discovered, each day new knowledge can be shared within it. A convivial space where deceleration is allowed, where permanent motion does not imply speed or productive urgency. A nomadic toolbox where experimentation may take its time. A time-space where the junction of moments leads to and exposes a memory that you find here before your eyes, and opens new horizons thanks to the exchanges we will have with you.
This space is for you
And we welcome you to it.