The Collection de l'Art Brut's 40th Anniversary Catalog
14.04.2016 - vieL’Art Brut de Jean Dubuffet, aux origines de la collection (Jean Dubuffet's Art Brut, At the Collection's Origins), Published by Flammarion.
A collective project directed by Sarah Lombardi
For some twenty-five years, Jean Dubuffet built up an extraordinary collection of works by creators on the fringes of the official art circles. He decided to make a lasting project of his enthusiasm by providing a site to exhibit his findings: works by self-taught outsiders, several of whom were confined to psychiatric hospitals or prisons, and many of whom were highly original figures, solitary and subject to disapproval.
He donated his entire treasure to the City of Lausanne, leading to the inauguration of the Collection de l'Art Brut in 1976. Jean Dubuffet is thus at the origin of the first collection of Art Brut works in the world; the collection includes works by such major creators as, among many others, Aloïse, Adolf Wölfli, Henry Darger, Augustin Lesage and Josef Hofer.
The fortieth anniversary of this landmark venue, whose holdings come to some 60,000 pieces, represents a chance to look back at the Lausanne institution's birth, and at several key moments along its path of development. A precious setting for one hundred of the museum's most significant works, the resulting publication sheds light on the Collection's origins: as such it reverts to the first show beyond the Compagnie de l'Art Brut's walls. That initial presentation, entitled "L'Art Brut," took place at the René Drouin Gallery in Paris: to look back at that event is to understand its audacity and critical impact for the times. The publication also brings together the works that Jean Dubuffet collected between 1945 and 1949, and that form the original core of the Collection de l'Art Brut. Sarah Lombardi and several others, including Michel Thévoz and Lucienne Peiry, successively the former directors of the Collection, comment on the wealth of the institution's experience since then, thus unreeling the Collection's ever-growing importance over the years.
This publication is available to visitors at the museum bookstore.