“Philippe Piguet”

Fair play

There are plenty of art events on in Paris this March: five remarkable fairs and exhibitions a gogo. Everything you need to plan an enthralling itinerary, with stops dedicated to drawing, contemporary African art and design… Are you ready for a suite of springtime fairs? From 30 March to 2 April… It’s THE must event: Art Paris Art Fair, this year welcoming 139 galleries from 29 countries. Half of the exhibitors are from overseas, and the fair has attracted many new faces this year, with 50 % of the participants being new galleries. An unmissable gathering for the art world and the general public, this fair, held at the Grand Palais, allows visitors to discover what’s happening in the art world with an ever-savvy focus on overseas scenes. This year, its general curator, Guillaume Piens, is backed up by exhibition curator and cultural consultant Marie-Ann Yemsi (also to curate the next Bamako Encounters), who has helped to select top galleries from the African continent – including the Maghreb – and its diaspora, most of which are exhibiting for the first time in France at the event. Amongst the twenty or so galleries singled out for this African focus, a few come from very diverse horizons: Uganda is present via the Afriart Gallery from Kampala; there’s also Nigeria, with Art Twenty One based in Lagos; the Ivory Coast is represented by the Fondation Charles Donwahi from Abidjan; not forgetting South Africa, with Whatiftheworld Gallery from Cape Town. The October Gallery from London, representing El Anatsui in particular, and Parisian gallery Magnin-A, namely exhibiting Chéri Samba, present great classics in modern and contemporary African art. Also of note: the solo show accorded to South African artist Kendell Geers by Barcelona-based ADN Galeria. Emerging African creation is also represented by stands in...

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Art [ ] Collector exhibits its 10th winner, Massinissa Selmani

Algiers-born artist Massinissa Selmani was selected as the 10th winner of the Art [ ] Collector project last October during the FIAC. Curated by Catherine David, his exhibition “Bleu comme une Orange” is now being held until 1 October at the Patio Art Opéra in Paris. As collectors committed to promoting emerging French artists, Evelyne and Jacques Deret, who launched Art [ ] Collector in 2011, joined forces with eleven personalities from the art world to decide on the prize winner: Léa Bismuth, critic and exhibition collector; Anne Martin-Fugier, collector, historian and writer; Isabelle de Maisonrouge, curator, professor at the NYU and journalist; Philippe Piguet, exhibition curator and critic; Françoise and Jean-Claude Quemin, collectors; Daniel Schildge, collector; Huguette and Alain Theze, collectors. Since 2012, nine artists have been chosen to hold exhibitions, including Iris Levasseur, Eva Nielsen, Abdelkader Benchama and Olivier...

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Contemporary Drawing: The Many Faces of Now is Our Future

On the special occasion of Drawing Now’s tenth year, the selection committee were asked to hand-pick an emerging artist to present in a special exhibition. The aim of this exhibition, curated by Philippe Piguet, is to communicate specific aspects of contemporary drawing that these artists imbue in their work. The selection committee, comprising of art critics, institutional representatives, art collectors, and connoisseurs, are praised for their efforts over the last decade in this special exhibition of their personal preferred drawing pieces. All the pieces exemplify a particular aesthetic, technique, style, and approach to this medium, and work together to curate a unified body of the latest offerings in the world of drawing. Christian Bernard, former director of Mamco, presents the work of Béatrice Cussol. Cussol’s work makes use of a Surrealist stylistic approach. The image conveys multiple meanings simultaneously and at the same time, urges the viewer to interpret the piece as they wish. Laurent Busine, former director of MAC’s, is presenting the work of Bertille Bak. Bak’s work conveys a tremendous intimacy through line and the inclusion of the personal in every rendering. Collector Michel Poitevin presents the work of Karine Rougier. Poitevin states about the artist’s work “… what appeal’s to me is her work’s restraint. Nothing is imposed, but instead reveals itself”. Olivier Kaeppelin, director at Fondation Maeght, presents the work of Assan Smati. Smati’s lively work endorses the playful and encourages movement. Alexandra Fau, art critic, presents the work of Charlotte Charbonnel. Charbonnel’s work, fleeting and plastic all at once, engages the viewer with a cloud ‘caught’ between two microscope plates and is truly a product of contemporary drawing. The collectors Nicolas Libert and Emmanuel Renoird present the work of THE KID. The work of this artist challenges any complacency in the viewer. Realistic, massive,...

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2nd edition of the Salon de l’Œuvre Originale Numérotée

From 11 to 13 December 2015, the Bastille Design Centre, in Paris, will host the second edition of the Salon de l’Œuvre Originale Numérotée (SOON), devoted to multiples. The salon is bringing together around 30 French and international exhibitors, under the artistic path of Philippe Piguet. The event is also offering an exhibition of boards from collections of the BnF, with prints, lithographs, etchings and contemporary serigraphs. On 10 December, the opening will see the presentation of the Prize SOON & R.L.D. Éditions to a contemporary artist who will have free rein to make a very large scale print with 10 copies published by R.L.D Éditions. To add to this, interviews of artists will be led by Philipe Piguet throughout the show. SOON was organised by CPCT ARTS & EVENTS and directed by Christine Phal and Carine Tissot, who also organise the salon of contemporary drawing DRAWING...

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“Socio-political Drawing” at DRAWING NOW

Curator of DRAWING NOW, Philippe Piguet, opened the fair’s ninth edition with a cultural exhibition entitled “Socio-political Drawing”, assembling an array of works from public and private collections that highlight the diversity of socio-political involvement over time, as well as the power of the pen. Throughout history many artists have expressed their views on current affairs; Pablo Picasso used contemporary events to revive the genre of history painting, as evidenced in Guernica (1937). Recent years have continued to provide an artistic stimulant for artists to express their views on current events, such as wars between nations, peoples’ freedom of expression, social deprivation, pressing issues about the environment, and inequality. Given the recent events of 11th January in Paris, the exhibition is particularly pertinent. However, Piguet reminded visitors that the exhibition is not a dedication to Charlie Hebdo, but to contemporary drawing and visual artists. Drawing’s sustained political commitment is highlighted in the emotive quote from Pablo Picasso, on display as part of the exhibition: “What do you think an artist is? Nothing but eyes if a painter, nothing but ears if a musician, a heart filled with chimes if a poet, or, if a boxer, nothing but muscle? On the contrary, an artist is also a political being, ever aware of the heartrending, burning, and fair events of the world, continuously fashioning himself in its image.” Many artists are indeed “political beings”, making their voices heard through various artistic mediums, as the artists involved in the exhibition demonstrate. Forming part of Barthélémy Toguo’s postcard series “Head above Water”, the artist’s Head above Water, Lagos, Nigeria (2005) acknowledges the artist’s responsibility towards society by giving ordinary people the opportunity for their voices to be heard. On one of the postcards, one can read “My dream is for Nigeria to change”, accompanied by a watercolour of an outstretched hand by Toguo. Also on display is a series...

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