With this ninth solo exhibition since 1999, the gallery is happy to celebrate its twenty years of collaboration with Jacques Villeglé.
The title of the exhibition, it will be understood, does not quite refer to any quality of the artist, and its subject, unlike all previous exhibitions, does not refers to one of the series defined by his Catalog Raisonné.
The exacerbated sensuality of these posters corresponds to a specific moment in the history of the Anonymous Tear.
Between 1989 and 1992, Villeglé carried out his last lacerated posters campaign in Paris, the «material» becoming scarce because of the disappearance of the feral signage for the benefit of large urban advertising billboards. However, this coincides very precisely with the explosion of erotic messaging on the Minitel, this French ancestor of the internet, today totally extinct, but oh so representative of French society in the late 80’s.
The result is a riot of naked and lascivious body fragments, evocative slogans and flamboyant colors dominated by yellow, red and flashy pink on a black background.
But as Harry Bellet writes, who penned the second text of the catalog: “one can sense a certain affinity between the artist and our modern Lorettes. Like them, he paces the pavements, and is a great walker. He also has a respect for them that is admirable: they are displayed, or rather, they are posted; he peels them away, frees them. Like him, they are anonymous: they have given names, but these are pseudonyms thought up by advertising creatives. He sometimes tears them, it’s true, but as he told Nicolas Bourriaud in the monography mentioned above, “a wounded face is always very beautiful.” In fact, Villeglé did not tear these ladies: he gently, tenderly, slowly and always amorously, stripped them.”
When we proposed to Jacques as a title for the show the deliberately provocative «Jeune, Gay et Impudique» (“Young, Gay and Shameless”), which is referenced in one of the discernable slogans on some of the works in the exhibition, he accepted it immediately, his only concern being that one would perhaps consider him to be shameless!