“Johan Creten is considered a precursor of the ceramics revival in contemporary art… Through his use of clay, his proven knowledge of the materials, his careful attention to glazing, and his thoroughly physical grasp of the medium, he restored ceramics to majestic grace and paved the way for young contemporary artists. The work of Johan Creten raises ceramics from a poor relation to a noble art.” – Galerie Perrotin on Johan Creten, Sunrise/Sunset.
“Sperling’s dynamic clusters of brightly colored forms blur the lines between painting and sculpture, image and object. Though each shaped canvas is distinct, it relies on other forms in the field of compositional coherence and energy. Often asymmetrical and happily off-kilter, a cluster is always satisfying in its surprising arrangement… they straddle painting and sculpture daringly, venturing form the wall and intruding into the space joyfully.” – Danny Kopel on Josh Sperling, Chasing Rainbows.
As an arts lover in Paris, you’re spoilt for choice. But once you’ve ticked off all the major art museums and galleries – such as the Louvre and Musée D’Orsay – you might want to explore some of the lesser-known options in the city with the added bonus of avoiding long queues, crowds, and sometimes even entry fees. Here’s our guide to arts off the beaten track:
Palais de Tokyo
Constructed in 1937 for the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques, Palais de Tokyo was designed to house the modern art collections of both the French state and the city of Paris. During World War II, its basement was used to store pillaged Jewish goods and property. Superseded in its original purpose by the opening of Centre Pompidou, the building was eventually gutted and abandoned. The Palais de Tokyo as we now know it was inaugurated in 2002.
Unless you’re like me, you probably don’t organise your holidays around art exhibitions. Which means, it can be a bit of a gamble what you might see when you finally arrive at an art gallery or museum. I find nothing more frustrating than discovering that an exhibition I would have been interested in seeing finished the day before I arrive, or starts the day after I leave a city. But luckily, no matter what exhibition is on, there are some museums in Paris that are worth visiting all year round. Whether it be stunning architecture or impressive permanent collections, these museums never fail to impress!
For all the architecture nerds out there, Centre Pompidou was designed by Renzo Piano and Richard Rogers and is a prime example of ‘constructivist’ architecture. The skeleton of the building is exposed, revealing all of its inner structure, functions and mechanics. Visitors zig-zag their way up the building via the external escalator.
It’s August, and while most of the French are going on summer holidays, there’s still plenty to do in Paris. Cafés and shops may close, but many of the city’s art galleries and museums remain open. The mass exodus of Parisians during the summer holidays means there are often less crowds, making it the perfect time to take in some art. Enjoy the empty city – and air conditioning! – while exploring some of the artistic offerings this summer in Paris.
Europe and North America have long been seen as artistic epicentres. However in recent years, the art world has begun to recognise South America, Asia, the Middle East and Africa as exciting artistic hubs. Fondation Louis Vuitton aims to shine a light on these previously overshadowed art scenes, as demonstrated by their current exhibition Art/Afrique, le nouvel atelier.