Fall Edito

October 14, 2015 | By French Culture

Dear friends,

I am delighted to present our exciting fall program which stretches from coast to coast and includes two important milestones: the one year anniversary of Albertine Books and the second edition of Festival Albertine.

Since opening in September 2014, Albertine has organized over 80 cultural events with illustrious figures from Abd al Malik to Marjane Satrapi and Joseph Stiglitz.  In just one year, it has become a true cultural destination and strengthened ties between France and America around books and the arts. 

Returning this year for a second installment is Festival Albertine (Nov 5-9), featuring a diverse range of young Francophone and American voices and engaged intellectuals such as Kamel Daoud, Riad Sattouf, Judith Thurman, and Adam Gopnik. All Festival events will be broadcast live at this link, so that culture lovers around the country can take part.

Many exciting events will also take place in other cities around the U.S. this fall. Three book-related events will share contemporary French literature with readers around the U.S. The Miami Book Fair and Boston Book Festival will present works by French authors, and Shoot the Book!, in Los Angeles, will identify contemporary French texts that might make great films.

Cinema is well represented this season. We open with CinéVardaExpo (featuring films by Agnès Varda) in Chicago and a Jean Grémillon retrospective in Los Angeles. Acclaimed director Abderrahmane Sissako will speak at a special screening of his film Timbuktu (which won seven Césars) in Atlanta, as part of the interdisciplinary France-Atlanta Festival.

Visual and performing arts are in full bloom. Notably, in Chicago, led by architect Xavier Wrona, the "A people is missing" collective will begin a residency at The Méthode Room, created in partnership with French curator Guillaume Désanges and Theater Gates’ Rebuild Foundation. Wrona has built a clever and impressive temporary television studio meant to spark debate around theories of architecture.

I hope to see you at some or many of these events and invite you to take a look at several additional event highlights below.

I wish you a wonderful fall.

Bénédicte de Montlaur
Cultural Counselor of the French Embassy in the United States

Albertine Books
Throughout the fall season, the Albertine Books will offer a diverse roster of events, with the highlight being Festival Albertine (Nov 5-9). The Festival showcases new, influential French and Francophone voices this year with a spectrum of writers and artists including illustrator Riad Sattouf and writer Kamel Daoud.

Albertine’s French Corners outposts can be found in independent bookstores around the US: Politics and Prose (Washington, DC), Brookline Booksmith (Boston), Books and Books (Miami), Nunu Arts and Culture (Arnaudville, Louisiana), Brazos Bookstore (Houston), Powell’s Books (Portland) and The Book Cellar (Chicago).

Books and Ideas
The Cultural Services will celebrate the 50th Anniversary of Ecole des Loisirs with an exhibit of its illustrators’ original drawings (Nov 20-Dec 20). On this occasion, four authors and illustrators will come to New York to participate in a series of events at schools and other intuitions, including Albertine, the MoMA Design Store in SoHo, and Invisible Dog in Brooklyn.

On the West Coast, Shoot the Book!, in Los Angeles will introduce the best of contemporary French literature to the American filmmaking community (Nov 9).

Also taking place this fall is the Boston Book Festival (Oct 23-24) and the Miami Book Fair (Nov 21).

Films, TV & New Media
This year’s NYFF (Sept 25-Oct 11) will include several French flicks and participants such as Clotilde Courau, Arnaud Desplechin, and Vincent Lindon. A Pialat retrospective will unfurl at MoMI in Queens (Oct 16-Nov 1). Finally, an Amalric retrospective will play at Anthology Film Archives and FIAF (Oct 29-Nov 8), with Mathieu Amalric present (Oct 30-Nov 6).

For those outside New York, don’t miss CinéVardaExpo, featuring films by Agnès Varda in Chicago (til Nov 8), a film series on Jean Grémillon from (Oct 17-Nov 21) in Los Angeles, and a screening of acclaimed director Abderrahmane Sissako’s Timbuktu, which won seven César awards, in Atlanta as part of the interdisciplinary France-Atlanta Festival (Nov 7).

Visual & Performing Arts

Jean Genet’s play Splendid’s, directed by Arthur Nauzyciel, will be presented at the Cultural Services in New York (Oct 20) as part of the French Plays series, along with a trilogy of plays by Fabrice Melquiot (Dec 2-3). French playwrights and companies will also be celebrated at the Princeton French Theater Festival (Sept 24-Oct 24).

Also this fall in Chicago, the "A people is missing" collective, led by architect Xavier Wrona, will begin a residency at The Méthode Room, a new project undertaken in partnership with French curator Guillaume Désanges and Theaster Gates’ Rebuild Foundation in Chicago's South Side.

And in Georgia, the France-Atlanta Festival (Oct 27-Nov 9) returns with various events including the American Premiere of Time for Us by French Choreographer Fabien Prioville, and an exhibition and lecture on French architect Philippe Madec, in partnership with Georgia Tech’s College of Architecture.


In celebration of Edith Piaf’s 100th birthday, Anne Carrère and her musical group will play PIAF! The Show at Manhattan’s Symphony Space (Oct 23-Nov 7). DJ Wax Tailor will kick off a trip-hop tour in the United States, and the wildly popular Christine and the Queens will put on three concerts at New York’s Webster Hall (Nov 9-11).

Bilingual Education

It’s back to school time and the Bilingual Revolution is once again in full swing! More and more parents are realizing the great benefits of bilingual education for children. 

The French Embassy seeks to be a catalyst for the development of bilingual programs in the United States and bilingual education is a priority for French-American cooperation. The growing network of dual language schools serves 25,000 students in 27 states and 85 cities. To learn more about how to support free bilingual education programs in the U.S., follow this link.

Higher Education

Marking the start of a new academic year, the Higher Education team is initiating a new contest: the France on Campus Award!  Student organizations that are dedicated to promoting France on university campuses in the U.S. are invited to apply.

The Partner University Fund celebrated the launch of a new French-American nanoelectronics laboratory (Sept 15) in New York, in the presence of French Ambassador to the United States, Gérard Araud, and Nobel laureate in Physics, Albert Fert. The lab is the fruit of an excellent PUF-supported collaboration supported between the Université de Lorraine, Université Paris Sud, New York University and University of California, San Diego. Seven new French-American research and training projects will be financed by the Partner University Fund over the next three upcoming years.  These exceptional collaborations in the areas of theater, archaeology, public health, applied mathematics, medicine, and nanotechnology will train the leaders of tomorrow.

Digital Cultures

The French-American Digital Lab // Connecting Cultures, created by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, co-produced by Business France, and supported by the Institut français,  is bringing ten emerging startups and cultural content creators to New York (Nov 16-25) to adapt their products to the American market while discovering new ecosystems and developing partnerships with local cultural actors.

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