Roof Portrait of Yann Toma, photography, copyright Shun Kambe, 2017
Both artist and researcher, Yann Toma is the lifelong President of Ouest-Lumière and an artist-observer at the UN where he serves as artist in residence. By salvaging material from the former electric power company Ouest-Lumière in the early 1990s, he has appropriated a symbolic network, an industrial infrastructure which he turned into his research territory and the very essence of his artistic practice. He focuses on collaborations with industrials, political scientists and philosophers.
His work is featured in many collections, including the Centre Pompidou, and entered into the prestigious Fonds National d’Art Contemporain (FNAC) collection in 2007. As a Professor of Visual Arts at La Sorbonne University where he directs the Art & Flux research team, within the ACTE Institute. This research group acts as an observatory of both theoretical and critical research, as well as a laboratory of artistic experimentation and production.
His work intersects with energy, networks as well as ethics. As an artist, his projects experiment with a redistribution of energy between the artist and his audiences, the latter depending on the audience to produce the work so that it is truly communal (Dynamo-Fukushima, Grand Palais, September 2011 - Human Energy, Eiffel Tower, December 2015 - Human Greenergy, Forbidden City of Beijing, October 2016 - United Nations New York 2017) and transformation-oriented. He is also the co-founder of the movement Le Maximalisme, of Sorbonne Artgallery.