The MÉCA, a new cultural showcase in Bordeaux
05.08.19
Patrice Huchet

#Bordeaux and its region is acquiring a new cultural tool, the Méca, in which the Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine is settling in cohabitation with two major regional actors in artistic creation. A magical setting to welcome the artistic dynamics of the largest region in France.

After restoring its historic centre and following the construction of the Cité du Vin with its bold architecture, Bordeaux is continuing its transformation and is firmly in line with the 21st century. Today, she is launching a new challenge with the creation of the MÉCA (Maison de l’Économie créative et de la Culture en Nouvelle-Aquitaine). The MÉCA brings together three institutions in a flamboyant building neuf : the OARA, a structure dedicated to performing arts, the ALCA, the book, film and audiovisual agency, and the FRAC Nouvelle-Aquitaine. Through this co-location and the sharing of shared spaces, the New Aquitaine Region thus intends to generate a synergy of interdisciplinary projects and propose tools adapted to the requirements of contemporary creation.

A stone’s throw from Bordeaux train station, the place inaugurated on 29 June last, embodying the cultural influence of the Region, is housed in a bold building that is developing like a loop on the banks of the Garonne, with its opposite access ramps. This sand-coloured “M” shaped arch is impressive with lightness, depth and transparency, despite its large dimensions. Its lines play with geometries and perspectives that confer a distorting effect and give the illusion of an architecture in motion.

A grandiose architectural project, an open door to the river in the shape of an “M”

The building is designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, known for his innovative building projects, Bjarke Ingels is at the head of an impressive series of projects including the new Google headquarters in California and the second major tower of the World Trade Center in New York. Located on the banks of the Garonne, on the site of the former slaughterhouses, the

MÉCA raises its 18,000 m2Its 120 metres long and 37 metres high on a platform composed of tiers and ramps. Inside, the MÉCA is home to the “largest stage in the region”. This modular space, of 360m2 and 20 m high, allows artists of the living arts (theatre, dance, circus, street arts…) to have a large creative stage at all times of the year for three-week residencies. The building also includes a dance studio, an 80-seat digital projection room, school reception areas and conference rooms. It is managed by the OARA (Office Artistique Région Nouvelle-Aquitaine)

The MÉCA is intended to be a place open to everyone but mostly intended for creative artists,” says Frédéric Vilcocq, MÉCA project manager. With some 35 artist residencies expected each year and the installation of the Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine, the site completes the production and promotion of contemporary artistic creation in the region with the CAPC.

A new showcase for the FRAC Nouvelle-Aquitaine

The New Aquitanian FRAC, which prides itself on having a Jeff Koons, the only one that a French public collection would possess, will have at its disposal 1200 m2 of exhibition spaces and 900 m2 for his reserves. To inaugurate its new premises, the Frac is offering a very dense exhibition “Il est une fois dans l’Ouest”, a hanging dedicated to the artistic scene in western France.

With the MÉCAthe region is acquiring a new generation Frac. An essential working tool, for its essential mission today, to democratize contemporary art, to plan the cultural development of the territory and to support young creation.

This building is the anchor point of a collection of more than 1200 travelling works, contemporary heritage of the Region with a network of more than 100 regional partners, associations, museums, art centres or schools and social institutions, exhibitions or events throughout the region. With this new space, Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine is entering a new dynamic by offering additional creative capacities thanks to its workshops and equipment, thus allowing artist residencies in collaboration with the other institutions of the MÉCAOARA and ALCA, which will encourage pluridisciplinarity and the meeting of different ways of thinking.

For the opening of its new offices, the Frac Nouvelle-Aquitaine proposes us “Once upon a time in the West” (article to come) a river exhibition that meets the one it runs alongside. This inaugurates a dense program and launches the new life of the FRAC NEW-AQUITAINE MÉCA under the best auspices.

29 June – 9 November 2019

“ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST”

Frac New Aquitaine Méca

MÉCA, 5 parvis Corto Maltese 33000 Bordeaux