“Big Trouble” in Montmartre

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The view from la Halle Saint Pierre where “Grand Trouble” is taking place

The title of the exhibition « Grand Trouble » is a reference to our world, full of incertitudes, brutality and  cruelty but also full of dreams, friendships and beauty. The forty or so artists assembled by Martine Lusardy who founded la Halle Saint Pierre in Montmartre are mostly friends. A small group led by Frédéric Pajak invited other artists and the result is a fun and very diverse show of caricaturists, photographers, sculptors and painters who invested the Paris temple of Art Brut in Montmartre.

La Halle Saint Pierre, a bookstore, restaurant and art center devoted to Art Brut in Montmartre

The dark series of rooms on the ground floor are an immediate contrast to the very sunny and lively restaurant/exhibition room which forms the hallway of la Halle Saint Pierre, a cultural get together center across the street from the famous Déballage Dreyfus, the paradise of discounted fabrics.

Marc Garanger, Algerain women, 1960

Marc Prudent a graphist and photographer and Micaël, a caricaturist, are close friends

 At first, the very dark portraits of Algerian women by Marc Garanger, a veteran of the Algerian war, and the photographs of Jean Michel Fauquet seem pretty depressing but little by little, the crazy statues of wolves by Olivier Estoppey and Chantalpetit’s meteorites, wake our spirits. And so do Czech sculptor Pavel Schmidt’s « David déchainé », (David unchained) 2015 and « Vincitrice-Victoire », 2015.

Micaël, an Argentinian artist who draws for le Monde, ink and watercolor

On the second floor of this very lively space, I ran into two jolly artists Marc Prudent, a photographer and graphist at « Cahiers dessinés » and Micaël, an Argentinian artist who draws for the website of le Monde and for « l’Imbécile » magazine. They are shown together, one with pictures of men living on the street, the other draws a cruelly ironical series of refugees. 

Al Martin, Hippotamesque en équilibre, 2012-2013, layers of acrylic paint

Al Martin shows a group of acrylic layered paintings which are very intriguing and Tomi Ungerer very dramatic photomontages of teh Second World War. Edith Dufaux, was still mounting an optical box called « Petit Théâtre » with fictional spaces which represent the relationship between body, space and memory.  Her photographs are exhibited at galerie Alain Margaron.

Edith Dufaux, Petit Théâtre,

 It is an effort to climb al the way to rue Ronsard but once you are there, the spirit of Montmartre permeates you and you can sit down for lunch or dinner in the very casual Halle. Art Brut is a catalyst for nice people and you will not be disappointed by the fun ambiance that reigns on the premisces ! (Grand Trouble, until July 30, 2 rue Ronsard) 

Sinyoung Park, Sans titre, 2015, is also exhibited at Galerie Valérie Delaunay

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