Bernard Lassus — Un art de la transformation, le paysage


Installation, sculpture

Bernard Lassus
Un art de la transformation, le paysage

Past: May 24 → August 28, 2017

The Centre Pompidou is paying an unprecedented tribute to the visual artist and landscape architect Bernard Lassus. A room will be devoted to his work in the museum’s modern collection circuit (from 24 May to 26 August), while the «Jardin monde» (world garden) will be on show until October in 800 m² of the south terrace on level 5.

This artificial garden created for the Centre Pompidou can be visited freely. It invites the museum’s visitors to immerse themselves in the poetic world of Bernard Lassus, and explore the contemporary issues of the art of landscaping. For the last sixty years, the visual artist, colourist, landscape architect and town planner Bernard Lassus has been studying and working on the transformation of urban territories. The ambience concept he developed in late 1950s pushed out the limits of spatial arts and explored the many ways of perceiving the daily environment. Light, colour and movement thus became the prime materials of his art and landscape projects. After studying painting, including at Fernand Léger’s studio, Lassus began to focus on the relationship with colour and perceptive phenomena. In direct opposition to geometric art, the ambience concept led him to highlight creative sensibility and poetic spaces. In the 1960s, he used his professional practices to further major projects designed to introduce colour into public housing blocks. Rejecting the uniformity of big complexes and the functionalist hegemony of the time, he sought to break up the linear, abstract repetition of construction standards through colour. He had a deep conviction that lodgings should be appropriated psychologically by their inhabitants, and was fascinated by the question of landscape. His experimental approach also made him a theorist of international standing, and for forty years he taught in landscape design and architecture schools in France, Italy, Germany and the US.

The creator of numerous landscaping projects in France and Europe, Lassus champions a concept going far beyond the creation of gardens, looking ahead to the kind of land development where an imaginative, sensitive, narrative setting contributes to a new, deep-reaching concept of the city. If Lassus talks of a «democratic landscape», prefers the term «dialogue» to «participation», has long studied the boundaries of industrial territories and looks forward to the creation of a «critical landscape», it is precisely because he himself questions and minutely explores an approach to environment that has been fundamental to industrial creation since the 1950s.

In more than one respect, the «Jardin Monde» of Bernard Lassus is a manifesto for all this research and achievement. A concentrate of the landscape architect’s visual experiments, it situates the contemporary issues of landscaping and proposes a synthesis of art, architecture and environment in a sensitive experience that audiences of the Centre Pompidou are invited to explore.

As well as the presentation of the tribute room and the «Jardin Monde», a talk by Bernard Lassus is scheduled for Wednesday 24 May :«The landscape-garden: the art of transformation».
Curator : Mnam/Cci, Aurélien Lemonier

04 Beaubourg Zoom in 04 Beaubourg Zoom out

Place Georges Pompidou

75004 Paris

T. 01 44 78 12 33 — F. 01 44 78 16 73

Hôtel de Ville

Opening hours

Every day except Tuesday, 11 AM – 9 PM
Late night on until 11 PM

Admission fee

Full rate €16.00 — Concessions €14.00

Gratuit pour les moins de 18 ans, billet exonéré pour les moins de 26 ans. Et pour tout le monde, les premiers dimanches du mois.

Venue schedule

The artist

  • Bernard Lassus