The artist is an actor and an essential figure at the Maeght Foundation. He is both a person and a character. In 2015, the exhibitions were interested in the representation, analyzes and fictions in which the artist is the object through the works themselves. The spring exhibition saw the works of Jörg Immendorff where the artist confronts politics, history and the epic and after, until 29 November, the works of Gérard Garouste. Here, the painter moves between reason and madness. The last exhibition of this cycle, from 12 December 2015 to 13 March 2016, is no longer the real or imagined biography of an artist but of the sculptor, his practice and his character.
For this year end exhibition, the Maeght Foundation presents a dialogue between three great contemporary sculptors: Richard Deacon from Great Britain, Sui Jianguo from China and Henk Visch from the Netherlands. They humorously ask, "what does it mean to be a sculptor today?"- not "what is sculpture?" but simply, "what does it mean to be a sculptor?" for all three in this "craft" and this game of sculpture. Richard Deacon, Sui Jianguo and Henk Visch have worked and thought together for many years on these questions. Their respective work develops both an intimate relationship between the work and the individual and a social relationship in relation to their sculptures in public spaces. Through their comparative perspectives, these "three men in the same boat" affirm the "youth" and vitality of sculpture in 2015.
In this exhibition conceived by the artists themselves, Richard Deacon, Sui Jianguo and Henk Visch offer a reflection on the irreplaceable nature of sculpture in the creation of today through their daily practices of space, form and sensation. While the genre of "sculpture" "exploded" in the 20th century in response to environments, installations, theater-performances or digital virtual spaces, these three artists in their own way reaffirm the importance of the experience of sculpture for the individual and society.
Richard Deacon, Sui Jianguo and Henk Visch, the self-appointed "3 men in a boat,” will not describe the Thames in this exhibition, as in the novel of the same name by Jerome K Jerome. Through their works, they will make us experience moments, rebounds, constructions and spaces that, to paraphrase Gasiorowski, make up this trip on "the river-sculpture". For three months, the Maeght Foundation will be inhabited by their gestures, materials or their characters, their compositions or structures. They will transform these spaces, bring them to life and make them "dance".
The forms proposed by the three artists will have "secret conversations" with some of the Maeght Foundation’s major sculptures. This is the case for Richard Deacon’s large metal abstract constructions with Alexander Calder’s stabiles, Sui Jianguo’s method of touch and formation with the practice of Alberto Giacometti and finally, fun, colorful shapes and Henk Visch’s characters with Joan Miró’s Personnages. Two rooms and the Giacometti Court will be devoted to the dialogue between the works of Sui Jianguo, Henk Visch and Richard Deacon. Each will also have two personal rooms dedicated exclusively to their own works. "In this exhibition, the ambition of the Maeght Foundation is to expose this silent life of forms at the same time as their intense relationships mobilizing the body, sight and thought" explains Olivier Kaeppelin, director of the Maeght Foundation, who proposed, with Christian Scheffel, general manager of the Blickachsen Foundation, this experience to these artists.