Born in 1968 in Clermont-Ferrand, François Durif is a writer and artist. A graduate of the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts de Paris, his work never ceases to question the status of the contemporary artist and their prerogatives.
During his first exhibitions, he alternated between being an interior decorator and a plasterer-painter, thus developing an art of discretion. Each time, he acts over time, records his actions in situ and produces a text on his progress.
Following a skills assessment, he left the world of art and became a funeral assistant and master of ceremonies in the Parisian funeral agency L’Autre Rive (2005-2008). Twelve years later, he looks back on this unique experience in his first story, Vide sanitaire, published by Verticales in October 2021. He is also keen to address the reader with the same frankness as during his performances in the Père-Lachaise cemetery.
It is in this recovered energy that he conceived his writing project at Villa Medici. He took the word “confetti” as an object, investigating this curious projectile and its successive moults: first of plaster – Italian confetti -, then of paper – at the time known as Parisian confetti. Since its history is inseparable from that of the carnival, he is studying them together with the intention of gradually opening himself up to the heterotopia of the festival and taking other fellows with him in the organisation of a carnival at Villa Medici in mid-Lent 2023.
At the same time as writing, he is converting part of his archives into confetti – a way of materialising the luxury of time offered by this localised utopia that is Villa Medici. For him, writing, as much as making confetti, is a manual activity that implies knowing how to cut – how to offset.
© Daniele Molajoli