Georges Adé (1936-1992) interviews the French artist Daniel Buren (°1938) at the occasion of his solo exhibition – simply entitled Buren (11 May - 5 June, 1971) – in front of the Wide White Space Gallery in Antwerp. As in his previous show with the same title (17 January - 6 February, 1969), Buren applied his renowned motif, namely the alternation of white and coloured 8.7cm wide stripes, inside and outside the gallery. In these site-specific installations, Buren continues his experiments and his criticism of the exhibition space, but they also challenge the way the public relates to the place.
In the film, fragments of the interview alternate with views of the exhibition. Adé assumes the part of the man or woman in the street and ventures to ask simple, but sharp questions that explore the foundation of Buren’s aesthetics and conceptual framework. The French artist explains his practice, his position regarding the art market, the way his work relates to the environment - outside and inside the gallery – and how the public should experience his installation.
Contrasting with these reflections and concerns, are Cornelis’ images of people walking on the pavement next to the Wide White Space Gallery. The passers-by ignore Buren’s site-specific installation. Is this just a funny coincidence? Or is it a playful note on Buren’s obscure claims? Then again, is this maybe a witty comment about the gap between conceptual art and the general public?

Original broadcast date: 22/05/1971

00’00" Leader. 00’07" Titles. 00’15" Exterior views of a work by Daniel Buren installed near the bottom of the walls in the Wide White Space Gallery, Antwerp. 00’55" Georges Adé asking Daniel Buren about his work and the way it relates to the environment, outside and then inside the gallery. 05’35" Exhibition poster. 05’45" Credits. 05’50"
(Source: Jef Cornelis 1964 - 1990, Espace Art Contemporain : Maison de la culture et de la Communication de Saint-Etienne, 1991)