Jean (Hans) Arp
Barthélémy Toguo
9 November - 12 November 2017
Booth E36
Shanghai Exhibition Center
Galerie Dumonteil is pleased to participate in the 5th edition of ART021 by presenting an exhibition titled Un Regard, which literally means “a glance” but is interpreted by francophones as “from another point of view. ” This proposal consists of artworks from 7 artists of different generations and nationalities with diverse visions and styles.

With more than 35 years’ experience in Europe and more than a decade in Asia, this exhibition showcases Galerie Dumonteil’s commitment and established exploration in the field of contemporary art.

The sculpture “Cry” created by Wang Keping in 1984 will be one of the centre pieces of the booth, surrounded by a series of bird sculptures on which the artist has been working passionately for years. As one of the first contemporary sculptors in China, Wang Keping entered into the contemporary art scene in the late 1970s, being a founding member of the early Beijing contemporary art group “The Stars (Xing Xing)”, which fervently championed artistic freedom in China. “Cry” is one of his last political sculptures as part of the charged environment of the late 1970s in Beijing. After settling down in France 1984, he shifted to a more naturalistic approach. His works evoke variously grotesque deformity, sensual beauty, and sublime abstraction. The artist merited a particular place within collections and in the best museums next to the bronzes of Rodin, Bourdelle, Moore and many others iconic masters.

Since 2014, Galerie Dumonteil has launched a partnership with the single national ceramic manufacture in Europe — Manufacture National de Sèvres in greater China region. Aside from the museum projects, Galerie Dumonteil presents two masterpieces during the fair created by two great artists for the manufacture in porcelain and stoneware of Sèvres.

“Vase Objet Casanier” is from the German-French sculptor, painter, poet Jean Arp (or Hans Arp, 1887-1966), active in many movements of the avant-gardes of the twentieth century, he participated in the Blaue Reiter in 1911 in Munich with Kandinsky. He met Max Jacob, Modigliani, Delaunay, Apollinaire in 1914 in Paris, and participated in the launch of Dada in Zurich in 1917. From 1926 to 1930, he joined the Surrealist movement, exploiting a personal biological symbolism. From this time, his work will always keep the organic component and the imaginary related to the unconscious. Arp is interested in sculpture since 1930. He transposes the human torso into an abstract formal synthesis that becomes a model for many of his contemporaries and subsequent generations. In 1965, Jean Arp was invited by the Director of Sèvres - Serge Gauthier to create three limited edition of vases-sculptures. The “Vase Objet Casanier” presented on the booth is among one of them, is considered one of his most important creation at the end of his life.

The other work “Grand Vase Charpin” is created by Cameroon artist Barthélémy Toguo (b.1967) in 2016 for celebrating the 260 anniversary of Sèvres. The artist has created a unique drawing on the famous vase shape of Sèvres — Charpin. The work with 1 meter height was produced by the national historical monument — the Wooden kilns of Manufacture de Sèvres dated back in 19th century. Toguo is currently living and working between Paris, New York and Bandjun. He uses drawing, painting and numerous media to reflect the absurdity of borders in an era of globalisation. He uses a limited repertory of images and colours to depict a dreamy world of human, animal and vegetal metamorphosis. The “Grand Vase Charpin” is a very rare unique piece in porcelain from the artist.

The installation “Mother Earth” just accomplished after several seasons by French artist Clément Borderie, will be another highlight. This poetic piece is a kind of land art photography which marries the environment to the seasons under a complex process. As resumed by the artist himself “I install a form in nature and it gives me an image of time.” He installs a “matrix” converted with stretched canvas in various places on the planet. These “skins” live and capture spatiotemporal traces, the energy of the place. This art is therefore fully in the environment, fed by it and expresses its identity, since each painting is the trace or imprint of the climatic or atmospheric conditions (pollution particles) of a certain place. It gives an image of it and contains its memory. Space and time are thus caught on space-canvas punctuated by more or less dense stains, with chromatic and formal variations. Real images of what the weather is like and of time which creates, cancels and recreates all. The result reveals a fascinating, contemplative works filled with humility.

Jean-Marie Fiori (b.1952) , who often speaks of “l’Enfance de l’art” in a double meaning when asked about his work, offers us an emotion that is both needless of any reference for its understanding and filled with the whole ‘Culture” of Humankind.

Born in Shanghai in 1989, Nisky, represents the younger generation of Chinese contemporary artists in the globalization era. His paintings are the result of an ever-consuming cross-disciplinary interests in art history, music, literature and cinema from both the west and the east. The new artistic concept of “Metacollage” is one that Nisky has developed, foremost as an attempt to “surpass the limits of collage” and to form a “superior unit” between the matter of separate elements, through the reformulation of their grammar, in order to attain to a “complete fusion”. For this creative enterprise the artist opts for materials that are rich in contradictions and out of respect for these conflicts finds himself revisiting a number of traditions. Four new paintings will illustrate the complete and deep exploration of this concept.

Cuban artist Rubén Fuentes has devoted his practice to exploring and expanding the field of painting. He creates euphoric and surreal ink landscapes that serve as homage to nature as well as a quest within a meditative and serene space. Fuentes believes that art acts as a means of self reflection, and thus, creating art allows one to practice and improve one’s ethical behavior and cognitive self. Therefore, the act of creating art is simultaneous, in a sense, to the act of meditation. Within the statement of  his series titled “Mind Landscape”, Fuentes states that he tries to represent in his artworks an inner strength, a cosmological and telluric force within us that transcends the duality of matter and spirit. Un regard, is a curated exhibition in which all the artworks exemplify the groundbreaking ways these artists are re-engaging with art historical genres such as landscape, portraiture, animal figures and still life, as well as traditional mediums such as painting, ceramics and sculpture.