EN
 Jean Dubuffet, Vence, 1959. Photo: John Craven © Fondation Dubuffet, Paris
Jean Dubuffet, Vence, 1959. Photo: John Craven © Fondation Dubuffet, Paris

Born in 1901 in the French city of Le Havre, Jean Dubuffet displayed an interest in visual art early in life, travelling to Paris in 1918 with the intention of becoming a painter. Dubuffet attended painting classes at the Académie Julian for six months before abandoning his studies. In 1925, after a trip to Lausanne and the completion of his military service, he returned to Le Havre and began working as a wine merchant. It was not until 1942 that Dubuffet decided to devote himself completely to art. Strongly influenced by artworks produced by mentally ill children, which were raw, expressive and free from visual conventions, as well as by the lifestyles of primitive peoples, Dubuffet’s work followed in the footsteps of the Surrealists in their rejection of the aesthetic and moral values of Western culture. Jean Dubuffet achieved fame by defining Art Brut as an independent art form, which he described out in his letter to Charles Ladame in 1945: “Drawings, paintings, artworks of all kinds, produced by unknowns, by maniacs, artworks that were made by spontaneous impulses, that are animated by fantasy and madness and do not follow the old path of catalogued art”.

Over the course of time, Jean Dubuffet developed a theory of art based on these fundamental ideas that fed into his paintings and drawings. Dubuffet rejected traditional ideals of beauty and created artworks that were consciously anti-psychological and impersonal. At the same time he experimented with a broad range of materials, from oil paints mixed with sand to polystyrene. Within his lifetime, Jean Dubuffet’s nuanced and impressive oeuvre was featured in a retrospective exhibition in Paris, Hanover and Zurich, as well as being displayed in numerous other international exhibitions. Dubuffet’s work is included in many pre-eminent art collections worldwide, including in the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, in the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and in the Tate Gallery in London.  Jean Dubuffet died in Paris in 1985, having already founded the Fondation Jean Dubuffet in 1973, which continues to manage his estate to this day.

Publications

Exhibitions

Solo exhibitions
2020-21
Jean Dubuffet. Le preneur d'empreintes

Centre de la gravure et de l'image imprimée, La Louvière, France

2020
Jean Dubuffet. Le cirque

Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2020-21
Jean Dubuffet. Un barbare en Europe

MEG - Musée d'ethnographie de Genève, Geneva, Switzerland

2020
Dubuffet chez vous. Notes pour les fins-lettrés

Dubuffet Foundation, Paris, Frankreich

2019-20
Ler dla canpane

Dubuffet Foundation, Paris, France

2019-20
Jean Dubuffet. Un Bárbaro en Europa

IVAM, Valencia, Spain

2019
Jean Dubuffet e Venezia

Palazzo Franchetti, Venice, Italy

2019
Jean Dubuffet. Un barbare en Europe

MUCEM, Marseille, France

2018
Jean Dubuffet. El viajero sin brújula

Centre Pompidou Málaga, Spain

2018-19
Jean Dubuffet. L'Arte in Gioco, Materia e Spirito 1943-1986

Fondazione Palazzo Magnani, Reggio Emilia, Italy

2018
Jean Dubuffet. L'outil photographique

Musée de l'Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland

2017
Jean Dubuffets Art Brut.! Die Anfänge seiner Sammlung. Eine Ausstellung der Collection de l’Art Brut, Lausanne

Museum Gugging, Klosterneuburg, Austria

2017
Dubuffet Drawings, 1935–1964

Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA, USA

2017-18
Jean Dubuffet. The Deep End

Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands

2017
Dubuffet in the Rijksmuseum Gardens

Rijksmuseum Gardens, Amsterdam, Netherlands

2017-15
Jean Dubuffet e i phenomenes

Botanical Garden, University of Padua

2017
Jean Dubuffet. Theatres of memory

Pace Gallery, London, UK

2016
Dubuffet Drawings, 1935–1963

The Morgan Library & Museum, New York, USA

2016
Jean Dubuffet. Anticultural Positions

Acquavella Galleries, New York, NY, USA

2016-17
Dubuffet. Jean des villes, Jean des champs

Lille Metropole Musée d’art Moderne, d’art Contemporain et d’art Brut, Villeneuve d’Ascq, France

2016
Jean Dubuffet. Metamorphoses of Landscape

Fondation Beyeler, Riehen/Basel, Switzerland

2015
Jean Dubuffet et les arts graphiques

Musée Pierre André Benoit, Alès, France

2015
Dubuffet: Form & Texture - Paintings, Sculptures, Works on paper

James Goodman Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2014-15
Jean Dubuffet: Soul of the Underground

MoMA – The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, USA

2014
Tant pis, j’y vais, j’aime ça. Jean Dubuffet, from Paris Circus to L’Hourloupe

Christie’s Paris, France

2014
Dubuffet. L'insoumis

Fonds Hélène & Edouard Leclerc pour la culture, Landerneau, France

2013
Dubuffet - scriptions, jargons, gribouillis

Dubuffet Foundation, Paris, France

2013
Chaissac - Dubuffet. Entre plume et pinceau

Musée de l’Abbaye Sainte-Croix, Les Sables d’Olonne, France; Musée de la Poste, Paris, France

2012
Jean Dubuffet: Late Paintings by Jean Dubuffet (1975 – 82)

Waddington Custot Galleries, London, UK

2012
Le poète et le voltigeur. Jacques Berne et Jean Dubuffet, 40 ans d'amitié

Musée d'art moderne André Malraux, Le Havre, France

2012
Jean Dubuffet. The Last Two Years

The Pace Gallery, New York, NY, USA

2011
Brassaï – Dubuffet

Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2011
Brassaï – Dubuffet

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

Group exhibitions
2015-16
Crosscurents: Modern Art from the Sam Rose and Julie Walters Collection

Smithsonian American Art Museum and the Renwick Gallery, Washington D.C., USA

2015-16
Keeping Pace: Eva Glimcher and Pace/Columbus

Columbus Museum of Art Columbus, OH, USA

2014-15
Thorn in the Flesh

The George Economou Collection, Athens, Greece

2014
Make It New: Abstract Painting from the National Gallery of Art, 1950-1976

The Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, MA, USA

2014
Modernism from the National Gallery of Art: The Robert and Jane Meyerhoff Collection

de Young, Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, CA, USA

2013
Kansai Collections

The National Museum of Art, Osaka, Japan

2013
Angels, Demons, and Savages: Pollock, Ossorio and Dubuffet, 1948–1953

The Phillips Collection and the Parrish Art Museum, Water Mill, NY, USA

2012-13
Masterpieces from the Berardo Collection

Gary Nader Art Centre, Miami, FL, USA

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