Jaïn, Pierre

Bataille de Verdun
  • Bataille de Verdun
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  • Portrait of Pierre Jaïn

Bataille de Verdun

Pierre Jaïn, « Bataille de Verdun », between 1958 and 1967, carved tree stump, 64 x 67 x 54 cm, photo : Morgane Détraz, Atelier de numérisation – Ville de Lausanne, Collection de l’Art Brut, Lausanne


Jaïn, Pierre,

(1904-1967), France

Audio biography


Pierre Jain (1904–1967) was born into a farming family in Brittany, France. The young man completed his military service, then was mobilised at Guingamp during the Second World War. However he suffered a car accident and was forced to undergo a long period of bed rest.


During his convalescence, Pierre Jain began to draw and immersed himself in reading books on anthropology, astrology, the occult sciences and archaeology, among other subjects. In 1942 he returned to the family farm in Kerlaz, Brittany. There he tilled the land until he was 47, then lived modestly on his pension.


From 1956 onwards, Pierre Jain devoted himself intermittently to sculpture, making more than 2,000 pieces. He carved stumps of wood and human bones, with a knife. He incised them with delicacy, then enhanced them with touches of colour. His works were inspired by illustrious people, historic scenes, passages from the Bible and elements derived from popular imagery.