Jean Dubuffet

A barbarian in Europe

Curator: Isabelle Marquette, Baptiste Brun

Painter, writer, and inventor of "Art Brut" (aka "Outsider Art"), Jean Dubuffet (1901-1985) was a major player on the art scene of the 20th century.
In the aftermath of the Second World War, this elusive and controversial artist brings into play a radical critique of the art and culture of his time, making ever renewing invention the pillar of creativity and thought. Borrowing from anthropology, folklore, and the field of psychiatry, he pursues the activity of decompartmentalization carried out by the avant-gardes of the inter-war period, blasts the belief in a supposedly primitive art, and opens up new pathways to creativity.
This exhibition shows how Jean Dubuffet interweaves into his painting and writing the research he devoted to what he called "Art Brut". It presents his artistic production in all its diversity, paying particular attention to showing the objects and documents resulting from the "prospections" (field surveys) that he organised by visiting ethnographic and folk art museums, as well as various collections dedicated to "the art of the mentally ill".
The exhibition "Jean Dubuffet, a barbarian in Europe" presents 290 works and objects from the largest French and European collections, including:
musée Rolin (Autun), Fondation Beyeler (Bâle), musée Unterlinden (Colmar), musée Barbier-Müller (Genève), musée d'Ethnographie de Genève, Sammlung Prinzhorn (Heidelberg), Louisiana Museum of Modern Art (Humlebæk), Collection de l'Art Brut (Lausanne), musée André Malraux (Le Havre), Musée de l'Abbaye Sainte-Croix - MASC (Les Sables d'Olonne), musée des Confluences (Lyon), musée Cantini (Marseille), Centre Pompidou / Musée national d'Art moderne (Paris), Fondation Dubuffet (Paris), musée des Arts décoratifs (Paris), musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac (Paris), Musée d'art moderne et contemporain de Saint-Etienne, LAM (Villeneuve d'Ascq).
It also presents over 30 objects preserved at the Mucem.
After its season at the Mucem in Marseille, the exhibition will then be presented at the IVAM (Institut Valencià d'Art Modern) in Valencia (from 3 October 2019 until 16 February 2020) and the musée d'Ethnographie de Genève (from 8 May 2020 until 3 January 2021).


From 23 April 2019 to 2 September 2019
Image for Jean Dubuffet
Artwork(s) loaned
  • Obscur Stage at the Foot of a Wall

    Jean Dubuffet (1901—1985)

    Obscur Stage at the Foot of a Wall 1957
    Imprint assemblage
    Museum of Modern Art MoMA New York  1962 « The Work of Jean Dubuffet »