Michel Nedjar (1947), an artist at the crossroads of art brut and contemporary art, is a founding member of L’Aracine, which donated its exceptional collection of art brut to the LaM in 1999.
These days, his mud and rag dolls are the works the public most identifies with him, although his prolific artistic production is far from limited to them. The exhibition sets out to explore the many aspects of his abundant work: the dolls, of course, but also the sculptures, drawings, paintings, and experimental films, dating from 1960 to 2016, along with the themes that underlie his entire practice: childhood and primitivism, life and death, and magic and travel.
For this exhibition, the gallery lent 13 Michel Nedjar’s artworks.
He is the living most exposed and published brut artist and yet, the extraordinary trajectory of this Frenchman poses a question rarely addressed: that of the impermanence of art brut. Discovered by Jean Dubuffet during his work on the resurgence of the symbolic body, he then became the protean artist we know today and who, in creation, embodies an absolute freedom. Found in numerous collections, he is the first brut artist whose works were added to the collections of the Musée National d’Art Moderne (France). Since 2008, he has been celebrated through six monographic exhibitions by Le Mahj (Paris), LaM (Lille), the Gugging Museum (Vienna), and the gallery.