Atelier de Paname is the kind of space where freedom and experimentation are the golden rules. In their 200m2 studio lost in the streets of Saint Ouen (Paris), Salomé Partouche and Jean Samuel Halifi have set an oasis of creation where a young generation of visual artists and fashion designers are sharing for caring.
At the crossroad of different fields and disciplines, they offer a forward-thinking vision of contemporary art you can’t find on the white walls of traditional Parisian galleries or museums. For the second consecutive year during the FIAC fair in Paris, they are inviting you to discover their universe during the Biennale de Paname edition 2, a three-day event where glossy ceramic pussy oysters will meet a high-tech spatial fight simulator and rainbow Playmobil armies. From October 18 to 21.
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 17.jpg
First of all, who are you, Salomé and Jean Samuel?
Salomé: We are the two visual artists behind this project. I do video, painting, drawing, sculpture, etc. Right now, I’m working on an installation consisting of a hundred oyster pussies in ceramic. My practice varies depending on what I want to talk about. The ugly, the unwatchable fascinate me. I am very influenced by the work of Kenneth Anger, Cindy Sherman, Jack Smith, etc.
Jean Samuel: I work a lot on sculpture, installation and drawing. My art is fed by the children’s world. I rework contemporary frescoes with toys that I create myself or that I reinterpret. Behind every childish installation, there is a reflection on ourselves. My main influences are Gerhard Richter, Joseph Beuys, Marcel Duchamp, and Jerôme Bosch, among others.
Can you tell us about Atelier de Paname’s genesis?
Everything was done naturally. After having spent three years in London, we came back to Paris and were looking for a studio where we could work. Being able to create a space where the knowledge of others is shared and transmitted is what we really wanted to achieve. In the beginning, we were three artists (Salomé, Jean Samuel and Damien Moulierac), but the team has grown, and now it’s ten of us – a group composed of all kind of creative talents (visual artists, fashion designers, and special effect designers). And things have been done as word of mouth. Friends of friends introduced us to artists, and that’s how Atelier de Paname was born. 
Who are the other artists in residency?
There are, among others: Arthur Avellano, a fashion designer who works with latex; Damien Moulierac, a sculptor and draftsman; or Mounir Ayache, who is building a flight simulator – coming soon!
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 2.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 3.jpg
Last year, during the FIAC art fair, you organised the first edition of the Biennale de Paname, which gathered a multitude of artists at the cutting edge of the contemporary art scene in Paris. The echo id had on the audience was real. How did you come up with the idea and how did you finally make it possible for the first time?
We organized the Biennale de Paname because we had a real desire to present the worlds of artists who were not represented anywhere else until now. We have an extremely talented generation around us, with very sharp reflections and works that speak to everyone. We also wanted to create the Biennale de Paname for a new audience who was still frightened by museums, galleries and other classic art places or institutions.
The event is free for all visitors – this point was particularly important to us. When we came back from London, we wanted to bring back with us a new vision of contemporary art and wanted to create an event by artists for all audiences. In London, we saw how young artists organized their own events and started different initiatives under their own vision. So when we came back, we wanted to do the same in Paris.
You are now about to launch your second exhibition, from the 18th to the 21st of October in Paris, at Rue Basfroi.  What can we expect?
The Biennale de Paname is going to feature the work of fifteen visuals artists:  Bianca Argimon, Arthur Avellano, Mounir Ayache, Jeanne Briand, Apolinaria Broche, Marc Aurèle Debut, Regina Demina, Margaux Esclapez, Martin Ferniot, Jean Samuel Halifi, Octave Marsal, Damien Moulierac, Leo Nataf, Salomé Partouche, and Andrea Picci.
It is a hybrid event that shares the atmosphere of our studio while respecting the DNA of the Biennale de Paname. The artists will present works (sometimes under study) that will be completed for the Biennale of Paname edition 2. It is also a way for the public to witness and follow the artists in their creative processes. As in the studio, you will interact with the works but also with the artists. It's as if they were receiving you at home.
You’ve been working on a collaboration with Adidas Creators project since last year.  Can you tell us more about how did it come up? What kind of support do they bring to the whole organisation?
The Creator Source is a brand new project we have developed with Adidas and other creative workshops. We had the idea to create an artistic incubator and to register Adidas as a real support of contemporary art. The idea is to reveal an artist to the general public by giving him or her the chance to exhibit his/her work at major events in Paris. The artist is also taken in residence at the Atelier de Paname to realize his/her project and to be in contact with other artists.
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 11.jpg
Can you tell us about your art curation process? How do you do the selection of the artists? What does link you all together?
Damien Moulierac, artist and long friend and one of the founders of Paname studio, oversees the selection of our exhibitions. All the artists we select are young creatives with whom we studied or met at open studios. We have the advantage of having studied in France and in London, which allows us to have a wide range of artists coming from all Europe.
What has the biggest challenge been since the beginning of Atelier de Paname?
The challenge was really to create an event, to organise the logistics and manage the production. We are all artists, so we had to start making things we never did before such as marketing and graphic communication, but it allowed us to create an event that really reflects who we are. Now, we want to continue this adventure and succeed on a long-term basis. 
How would you describe the Parisian art landscape today? You all have different backgrounds and you are not coming from the same art spheres and spaces. What would you say about the artistic dynamic of the city?
In Paris, nowadays, it’s very difficult to be spotted by a gallery or any other classic institution. We’ve been seeing the same things everywhere for some years now, which is also one of the reasons that made us want to create this event.
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 4.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 5.jpg
What does being ‘experimental’ mean in 2018?
Take risks and not be where you are expected.
What would your dream collaboration be as a collective?
To continue all together and export our project worldwide: Asia, South America, Europe, etc. Anywhere!
How do you see yourself in ten years?
At the Biennale de Paname edition 5.
The Biennale de Paname edition 2 will take place from October 18 to 21 at Atelier de Paname, 23 rue Basfroi, Paris.
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 7.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 8.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 9.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 12.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 15.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 13.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 16.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 19.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 20.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 18.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metal Magazine Antoine Guilloteau 8364 Copia.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metalmagazine 14.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metal Magazine Antoine Guilloteau 8466 Copia.jpg
Atelier De Paname Metal Magazine Antoine Guilloteau 7927 Copia.jpg