Presque noire et blanche


Drawing, lithography / engraving, painting

Presque noire et blanche

Past: October 10 → November 16, 2013

Galerie Jean Fournier is delighted to be presenting Almost Black and White, an exhibition in the form of a conversation between works having in common their use of black — a regularly recurring subject and a perfect excuse for bringing these works together for the first time.

Almost Black and White is the first of a series of themed exhibitions yoking the generations of artists who have shown at the gallery since its creation in the 1950s. This ongoing programme is a tribute to founder Jean Fournier (1922–2006), always keen to compare different artists’ ways of seeing and as committed to younger artists as to such established figures as Simon Hantaï and Sam Francis.

The programme, then, draws on the gallery’s history, offering visitors a kind of “imaginary museum” where they can rediscover old favourites alongside pieces never shown before. Just as in a collector’s home, the works will dialogue by ricochet, in all their timelessness.
This initial exhibition looks into the uses of black in different media: drawing, painting, prints, collage, folding — and the weaving to be found in François Rouan’s pastels. With each artist approaching black in a distinctive way — in some cases through a confrontation between form and ground, in others by using it as source of light — the result is a diversity that generates all sorts of transformations of shape, colour, texture and drawing.

Almost Black and White was triggered by the urge to re-present Pierre Mabille’s « Récits » — ink drawings first shown at the gallery in 2010 — in which a blend of the drawn and the painterly endows black with different roles as form, ground and activator of contrast. Highly reminiscent of Matisse in their vibrant luminosity and spatial proliferation, Mabille’s drawings have also influenced the choice of what to put with them: Shirley Jaffe’s lithographs, produced by the Eric Seydoux workshop in 2004, and Claude Viallat’s lino-cuts from 1966.

Some of the artists, among them Frédérique Lucien and Claude Tétot, have created works specially for an exhibition whose high points also include a remarkable piece — on show at the gallery for the first time — from Simon Hantaï’s Les Laissées series. Some works, like those of Jean François Maurige, Didier Demozay and Stéphane Bordarier, dialogue naturally through their shared use of distinctive media or methods, while other first-time encounters — Michel Parmentier (1963) and Claire-Jeanne Jézéquel — are more unexpected. The exhibition is also an opportunity to rediscover the work of Kimber Smith, one of the American artists Jean Fournier revealed to the French art public. Black is just as graphic but more linear in the drawings of Gilgian Gelzer and Nathalie Elemento, both of whom, in different registers, bring a host of networks to life on paper. And last but not least, Pierre Buraglio has contributed a group of near-black paintings on the theme of night.

Curator: Emilie Ovaere-Corthay, director of Galerie Jean Fournier.

  • Opening Thursday, October 10, 2013 6 PM → 8:30 PM
07 Paris 7 Zoom in 07 Paris 7 Zoom out

22, rue du Bac

75007 Paris

T. 01 42 97 44 00

Rue du Bac

Opening hours

Tuesday – Saturday, 10 AM – 12:30 PM / 2 PM – 7 PM

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Venue schedule

The artists

  • Simon Hantaï
  • Pierre Buraglio
  • Pierre Mabille
  • Michel Parmentier
  • François Rouan
  • Sam Francis
  • Gilgian Gelzer
  • Claude Tétot
  • Didier Demozay
  • Frédérique Lucien
And 7 others…

From the same artists