François Morellet
L’art de dessiner des angles et des carrés nets de sentiments
16 November 2017 - 27 January 2018

Hervé Bize is pleased to announce L’art de dessiner des angles et des carrés nets de sentiments, an exhibition of works by Francois Morellet who passed away in May 2016.

The gallery had a strong relationship with the artist during almost thirty years.

This will be the unique solo show in a gallery at the end of 2017 at the same time as the retrospective organized in New York by the Dia Art Foundation in its both locations, Dia:Chelsa and Dia:Beacon*. The exhibition is focused on a lesser known but essential aspect of the artist’s work: his drawings. While Morellet and his systematic approach to art making is renown internationally through numerous exhibitions, publications and articles, his works on paper have been rarely exhibited. The exhibition brings together key works on paper from the 1970s to 2000, gatherinfg an ensemble of exceptional quality.

Far from being hermetic, Francois Morellet’s work, where language and a form of irony surface constantly, is often characterized by the oxymoron: “un rigoureux rigolard”. Since the early 1950s, Morellet took part in the international avant-garde by conceiving a form of geometric abstraction shaped by systems that reduced the artist’s subjectivity to a minimum. A specific system determines each work and its execution; therefore drawing is essential to Morellet’s work. It is a unique process that allows him to articulate his intentions. Through drawing, Morellet anticipates and sets up what will be experimented on another scale with other materials in the rest of his work.

In the 1950-1960’s most of Morellet’s drawings were preparatory works for paintings and other projects, whether executed or not, but they cannot be considered as studies only. They function as autonomous works and lay the foundation for the drawings of the 1970s – 1990s, primarily engaged with the concept of pictorial space as a structure. Francois Morellet was very forward thinking throughout his life, even one of the first artists to use neon light, and continued to experiment with new materials.

This show is also reminding some of the projects that François Morellet has realized in Nancy and the region these three last decades especially a fantastic permanent neon installation, Hommage à Lamour (2003), which is located on a facade of the Musée des Beaux-Arts, close to the gallery spaces.

* On view until June 2nd, 2018.