O Gael Moissonnier είναι ένας d.i.y. καλλιτέχνης που έτρεχε (και ελπίζω να ξεκινήσει ξανά) την εκτός του hip κυκλώματος μικρή zerojardins. Είναι πολύ ενδιαφέροντα όσα έχει να πει, δεν θα τα μεταφράσω γιατί εκτός του ότι βαριέμαι, πιστεύω πως εσύ που διαβάζεις αυτές τις γραμμές σίγουρα γνωρίζεις αγγλικά.
1. First a core question with two parts.
First part, why make music after all?Is it only personal expression or need? Are there more implications to the aforementioned (social communication, a political act)?
Second part, why spend money and resources on putting out other people's music?...
Making music has been the result of a very long process. Actually I started making films — Super-8, 16mm and videos later on — while studying fine-arts and most of these where silent. Then I met a video artist and we started collaborating and played some live expanded cinema performances. It became obvious that sound had to be involved but I was still focused on image so we invited someone to record soundtracks for us and eventually play live if possible. Making things live really obsessed me and was one of the triggers. At the same time, I was also active setting up noise, improv' and experimental shows. Meeting people, building a community, shaping our small local scene, running a venue finally pushed me to start some noise bands, record soundtracks for my films and later on release the first Zerojardins records. Meeting, collaborating, sharing with people has been stimulating and will always be. Music is a vessel, a community builder that enables all of this.
Releasing other peoples music is part of this global sharing experience. Putting out cdr’s and tapes has always been very cheap, so basically makes everything possible. I really like the fact that I can burn a copy whenever needed. If someone is interested I can produce it straight away and send it over as a gift. Another fact is that I’ve lost money on all the factory produced CD’s & LP’s but I’m also the worst commercial ever so it makes sense. Over the last years, labels like Care Of have been trying out some very interesting alternative economic strategies, and I believe there’s still a lot of interesting concepts that will emerge from this kind of reflexions. Spending time, money and resources is just one way of seeing things, I’d rather say I’m widening focus (even if it’s at a rather small scale), on music I like and think it’s important to spread and share.
2. Zerojardins: a label, another way of communicating, a disguise maybe? Has it slowed down, is it on hiatus or something else?
Zerojardins, has been on standby for the last 8 years but there are new releases on their way. I see Zerojardins as a space of expression, where everything is possible. Nothing is and will ever be planed. But you can expect more records, shows, radio programs, exhibitions, a website with archives of live recordings and jams that occurred at grrrnd zero, Lyon, some years ago…
Faux Amis LP cover
3. D.i.y: how do you feel about it? A aesthetic choice or a financial need? How are things in France in d.i.y. and impovisation?
Meaning artists, labels, funding, venues.
Don’t wait, act. If nobody is setting up the shows you’d like to see, well do it.
There are a lot of different DIY scenes in France. In early 2000 most of these scene where pretty hermetic, but it has changed a bit. Also, 10 years back, you’d only play in the main cities (Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Bordeaux). Today, you can play in a farm in the middle of the country side with more than 20 people attending. Small labels emerge, radio shows flourish… More and more people are getting involved. It reflects a generation of people, tired of mainstream radio bullshit. It’s a bit like craft’s beer, without all the hipe, people like it better than Heineken right now, people act more responsibly, by local products. All of this is, in most of the cases, non benefit investment. More action, but less funding. Some venues have over the years, earned a status and managed to get some subsides, but most of the funded festivals, labels, venues struggle from funding cuts. Artists need to work aside from their practice or develop a parallel activity like teaching, workshops… to secure a decent living. Antoine Chessex * speaks about this in his recent book on the Swiss alternative scene. It’s an interesting read I would recommend. (* Unfolding the Margins, Zürich: éditions du désordre, 2017)
4. Macron and (neo-fascist actually) neo-liberal politics. How all this affects musicians in France? Your thoughts about the situation?
From that far as Greece, we are watching a resurgence of forms of direct action in France (and we like it!). Is that true?
Has it affected artistic circles as well?
Well, Macron is tearing down what was called the ‘French cultural exception’. Massive cuts have been made, and at the same time the army’s budget is increasing. I guess this pictures out pretty well the situation over here. Our elections last have been a joke. Not a single candidate had a proper program, all the media attention was on insecurity and fear of extreme-right eventually winning elections. People voted like sheeps for Macron, because he was an alternative to the regular political parties that had been disappointing people over the last 50 years and also because he was young. They just didn’t see that he was the sum of our left and right wing politics that had occurred for so many years. They basically voted for the same Neo-liberal, bank driven mess we already had as an alternative. How is this possible ? In this context, being and artist, a musician, is pretty complex. I hardly ever met someone that manages a living with music an art making. All of this mess is still a rather fertile ground for more non profit venues and life alternatives like in Notre Dame des Landes.
I wouldn’t say resurgence of forms of Action Directe. Maybe this is just how international media depict what is happening. There’s always been left radicals in demonstrations and will always be. There’s always been citizen action, like in Grenoble, some years ago or in Notre Dame des Landes, Bure, and Val de Suse more recently, but I’d rather speak of a mash up of concerned citizens, ecologists, communists and leftwing radical.
5. EU politics, general war in the Middle East, european intevention there: How do you feel about all this? Your thoughts about the greek debt situation?
We live in a more and more individualized world and unless people start looking a little bit further than their own self/wealth I don’t see how anything can change. We all know that the Neo-liberal system is a dead-end. Still, bankers and industrials are in control. Why would they try to end war or the Greek dept if they can make profit out of it. It’s all the system that needs to be changed. It’s a shame nobody these days have the balls French people had in 1789. Make a revolution, Cut the powerful heads and start over again. I guess this last sentence nails it pretty well.
6. The shitty-cliche final question: If you could be another (male or female) artist who would that be and why?
What ?? Should I really answer this ?
I’d just really love to be a cat. We’re all lazy by nature, so I guess this is a kind of life I would appreciate.