Mettre les formes (group show)

15 March - 6 May 2023 Faubourg Saint Honoré - Paris
Galerie Nathalie Obadia is delighted to present Mettre les formes, a group exhibition of sculptures. On this occasion, the works by Guillaume Leblon, Benoît Maire, Rodrigo Matheus, Meuser, Shahpour Pouyan, Laure Prouvost, Antoine Renard, Sarkis and Jessica Stockholder, nine artists represented by the gallery, are invited to converse with those of one of the pioneers of 20th century sculpture, British artist Anthony Caro.

In The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception¹, James J. Gibson defines sculpture as a perennial arrangement of each surface in relation to the others and to the floor. The exhibition Mettre les formes presents a diversity of surfaces - with extremely varied volumes, materials and textures - that are part of the same continuum: that of the sculptural apparatus. Despite their disparities, these twenty-five sculptures cohabit in the same space to narrate tales through forms and materials, for the duration of an exhibition.

This heterogeneity may initially be explained by the transgenerational character of the featured artists. The possibilities of production and fabrication of sculptures today reach an almost boundless horizon: when certain artists stand in a form of continuity of the sculptural tradition, by preserving the old techniques of modelling, molding and assembly of materials, others dissociate themselves by developing news technical declinations. From different generations and various backgrounds, the featured artists have used a wide range of means of fabrication: they sometimes use materials of mineral origin (stone, plaster, clay, but also metals), organic origin (wood, vegetable, wool) or sometimes synthetic. By combining industrial objects and natural materials, manual, artisanal and manufactured approaches, this gathering highlights the richness and complexity of the sculptural apparatus.

Anthony Caro's (1924-2013) sculptures, made of welding and metal assemblies that defy the laws of balance, represent a radical turn in three-dimensional art. In the exhibition space, the abstract curves of the British artist's works are combined with the figurative perspective of contemporary artists. Unprecedented for their time, Anthony Caro's sculptures are a driving force behind a subsequent total freedom of expression.
The visitor wanders along a path made up of sculptures on plinths and on the ground, where an interplay of balance between materials, unequal proportions, voids and solids are interwoven.

Through these different experiments on matter, color and space, Mettre les formes proposes a dynamic and living environment: this combination of sculptures offer infinite variations, playing with the hybridization of the world and its metamorphoses.

¹ Gibson, J. J. (1979). The Ecological Approach to Visual Perception. Houghton, Mifflin and Company.