Sociology can be one of the most effective weapons to understand and defend art; not just art that already exists, as canonized within museums, but art that makes itself the most surprising artistic research, the most audacious, the most critical, the most free. -Pierre Bourdieu
In this first of the new Pragmatics of Art series, French sociologist, the late Pierre Bourdieu, is captured in conversation with Art School students about the role of art, artistic consumption and production, the role of value and taste in art, and the role of the artist in contemporary configurations of culture. It has been translated by renowned Bourdieu scholar, Michael Grenfell who provides an introduction contextualising Bourdieu’s thought and broad interests, particularly in matters of culture.
This is a translation of a discussion between Pierre Bourdieu and students at the École supérieure des beaux-arts de Nîmes. The talk took place in 1999 and was originally published as ‘Questions for and with students from an art school that is challenged’ in Penser l’art a l’école (ed. Inès Champey), Acts sud, Arles 2001.