This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of esse magazine. Thirty years throughout which successive cultural workers passionate about contemporary art have committed themselves to its analysis, promotion, and appreciation. To support us in this mission—in this passion—we launched the Vendu–Sold benefit auction in 2009. Since then, every year we have feverishly prepared the latest edition of this important fundraising event. An opportunity to showcase the works of artists that we value and to play a role in the creation and enrichment of new and well-established collections, this auction lies within the vast sphere of philanthropy and the art market, a fragile domain that deserves our utmost care and attention.
The same is true for the art publishing milieu to which we belong: it too is a precarious sector that needs the support of all its stakeholders—artists, authors, cultural workers, readers, funding partners, and philanthropists—in order to accomplish its valiant mission of research and theoretical reflection, as well as the promotion and dissemination of contemporary art.
As our honorary president Sophie Desmarais emphasizes: if we, the creative community, are fireflies engaged in a poetic resistance that bores deep into the human spirit, then our readers, funding partners, and art patrons support us in paving the way for a better understanding of art. For this, the team from Les éditions esse is deeply grateful. I shall leave the final word to the late Frédéric Metz, who wrote in the 2013 Vendu–Sold catalogue, “Thank you, dear artists, for these raptures, these pleasures, these joys that you have always given me. Thank you, dear art enthusiasts, for collecting these fragments of life, which, through your genius, will live on for all eternity.”
Sylvette Babin, director, Les éditions esse
Photo: © Jean-François Brière