The Hip Hop culture opens the doors of the Museum of Contemporary Art to those who in the United States, Europe and Marseilles embody a global phenomenon. From the first blocks of the Bronx to the golden age of Marseilles find the fever that seized the world in three stages and four movements: DJing, MCing, Graffiti & Bboying.
The tremendous energy and inventiveness of DJs, masters of ceremonies, graffiti writers, break dancers and their crews have taken the streets, clubs and youth of the world.
Emerging in the Bronx district, which is experiencing the worst economic conditions, a youth who dreams to exist invents new forms of survival, to party, to dance, to mark the urban space, to defy the establishment by the speech and gesture. In almost ten years, from 1970 to 1981, it became the new popular culture and conquered New York from neighborhood to district, from underground trains, clandestine festivals to night clubs, improvised exhibitions in the most cheap downtown art galleries.
In the early 1980s, the expansion of Hip Hop culture took on a new dimension.
It spreads simultaneously on both sides of the Atlantic thanks to the radios and the first programs devoted to it on television. This is the beginning of the Reagan years in the USA and the Mitterrand years in France. From 80 to 85, Hip Hop becomes a global phenomenon, a culture that opens the doors, even if paradoxically, it begins to see its closure in America. Initial politicization and resistance sink under the influence of marketing. The labels signed the groups transforming MCs into stars and the majors Hollywood decided to exploit the new lode inspired by the considerable success of Flashdance in 1983 and its famous scene of breakdance.
The second half of the eighties was cruel for those whom recognition forgets, the mode of art only has attention for Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring or Kenny Scharf. Rappers have become idols that have erased DJs and MCs. In Europe, groups emerge and the first to dispose of the materials and to agree to be signed by the emerging labels will be a considerable success. It is the time of the golden age Marseille that shakes the city in the 90s and makes the Marseille art scene one of the most inventive, connected to the States and radiant until the turn of the century.
The scenography of the exhibition encourages cross-fertilization between all the disciplines that have been fertilized by this movement: music, dance, fashion, cinema, writing, graffiti, tag, photography.
The exhibition is conceived with the MuCEM, which makes available the most beautiful pieces of its collection, and is part of the dynamics of the projects of the European Capital of Sport in Marseille.
It is presented at the same time as the new collection hangings which emphasizes the works of the collection and some important institutional and private loans that reveal how the values of sport (game, competition, effort, training, rules, fair play) could inspire the artists. In other words, and as Giraudoux wrote: "Sport is the art by which man frees himself".