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Exhibition: Jean Dubuffet hallowed in Marseille

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"Affluence" (22-23 March 1961), by Jean Dubuffet, oil on canvas. DUBUFFET FOUNDATION, PARIS / ADAGP, PARIS 2019

The Paris Museum of Arts and Popular Traditions (ATP), the Museum of the Civilizations of Europe and the Mediterranean (MuCEM) in Marseille, is the owner of the collections of fire. a forgetful heiress. Regularly, he presents exhibitions that are interested in this field of creation. Sometimes directly: in 2018, a tribute to Georges Henri Rivière, founder of ATP, or indirectly: Picasso and these traditions in 2016, Dubuffet this summer. There is a coherence of which few museums can boast and the desire to show works which for a long time have been held to be external to what was meant by art, that is, the fine arts in the usual sense of the notion.

Read the review of the exhibition devoted to Georges Henri Rivière: The man behind the modern museum

In this step, Jean Dubuffet (1901-1985) is the perfect ally. Because of his many writings on the subject, because he imposed the term "art brut" and formed a collection from 1945 and because it has made fruit, in his own Works, processes and effects that suggest brutality and schemism, it appears as the one that has contributed the most to convincing that the creation is not done entirely in the workshops of professional artists passed by schools.


The Collection of Art Brut, which has been in Lausanne since 1976 because the French museums then looked down on the works of the latter with condescension, is one of the main results of his action, the other obviously being the artist's own creation. The two are logically close in the exhibition, entitled "Jean Dubuffet, a barbarian in Europe". After a preamble intended to recall the main characteristics and epochs of Dubuffet painter and sculptor â € "words to understand themselves in their broadest acceptation â €", the hanging procè¨ from to reconciliations between him and everything he has watched, researched, accumulated and, finally, published, from 1964, in a series of books, The Prints of the Art Brut.

The essential, as we expect, are the works found in European psychiatric asylums

In this "all" there are productions that highlight peasant crafts and folklore that have not yet been totally destroyed by the irruption of "progress". and his techniques and other issues from distant cultures in time – a sculptured stone woman from Ukraine from the first centuries of the Middle Ages – or in space – bamboo engraved kanaks, fang mask from Gabon. But the essential, as we expect, are the works found in European psychiatric asylums. Aloïse Corbaz, Adolf Wölfli, Pascal-Dà © sir Maisonneuve, Guillaume Pujol and Auguste Forestier: these "crazy people" who owe Dubuffet a part of not being forgotten are reproached. By some of their famous pieces today, including the fabulous mask of seashells and plaster of Maisonneuve titled Queen Victoria, which easily supports the comparison with the fantastic figures of Arcimboldo.


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