Painting masterpieces from the Yvon Lambert Donation
From July 1st
But the painting is always there to let us know where we are.
Rene Ricard, The Pledge of Allegiance, 1969
From the 1960s on, when Yvon Lambert began his career as a gallery owner and pioneered the defence of the new artistic avant-gardes – conceptual art, minimal art, land art – painting was challenged by a new generation of artists and critics committed to redefining the field of art in its entirety. Specific objects, artworks at the concept stage or other attitudes which become form bear witness to new ways of thinking, of perceiving or sharing art and seem to condemn painting to its inevitable demise. “Painting is dead!”, some would say in unison.
It was upon this equally sad and erroneous observation that young artists decided in the 1980s to celebrate once again this practice that is inseparable from the very notion of art. With a certain irony, the death of painting spurred some to play with its remains in a frantic dance and, for many, was the best time to start painting.
This painting of a new beginning, whose heroism and vitality lay at the heart of the 1980s creative abundance, soon seduced Yvon Lambert. Driven by an unwavering passion for novelty, his gallery has welcomed a multitude of painters who, if they aspired to blow a fresh wind, shared with the artists of the previous generation – not without a certain jubilation – the gallery owner’s unique programme.
Some have seen in Yvon Lambert’s choices a complete and condemnable break with what is the soul of the gallery. This was a misunderstanding of the vision of a man very attentive to the historical evolutions of his time, just as the observation that painting had irremediably died over the past decades neglected too quickly an entire part of the most avant-garde creation.
Going back in time from the 1980s to the 1960s surrounded by artworks from the Yvon Lambert Donation allows us to experience the aesthetic upheavals linked to the practice of painting, while experiencing the permanence of an art medium at the heart of sensitive reflections in the second half of the 20th century.
With the support of CNAP.
Curator: Stéphane Ibars
The artists: Miquel Barceló, Robert Barry, Jean-Michel Basquiat, James Bishop, Jean Charles Blais, Robert Combas, Enzo Cucchi, Louis Jammes, Anselm Kiefer, Bertrand Lavier, Loïc Le Groumellec, Robert Mangold, Brice Marden, Agnes Martin, Olivier Mosset, Edda Renouf, Robert Ryman, Julian Schnabel, Richard Serra, Niele Toroni.