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"Beauty and the Beast: Crossed Beauty in contemporary art" opens in Bordeaux
A woman looks at a sculpture "D'une fleche mon coeur perce" (R) by French artist Martial Raysse at the exhibition "La Belle et la Bête" at the Institut Culturel Bernard Magrez in Bordeaux, southwestern, France on November, 1, 2012. A left a sculpture "Taxidermia" by Algerian artist Adel Abdessemed. AFP PHOTO/ NICOLAS TUCAT.
BORDEAUX.- The Institut Culturel Bernard Magrez’s new exhibition of modern and contemporary art crosses men’s and women’s views on Beauty, bringing forth the paradox of Beauty induced by the confrontation of thirty artworks.

Referring to Jean Cocteau’s eponymous film of 1946, adapted from a story written in the tradition of the French literary salons of the 18th century, Beauty and the Beast invites us to reflect on the duality of Beauty, one of art’s fundamental subjects that questions the notions of otherness, of one’s reflection in the eye of another, of the identity that is built in the strange mirror of one’s kind. This observation is particularly striking in the connection the artist has with his model, who sometimes becomes the alter ego that he needs to represent himself in the world. This double often provokes ambivalent relationships of domination and subjection, avid voracity or an insatiable quest of the singularity of oneself in the other…

It is one of the keys to understanding the famous Bernard Buffet painting, Les Oiseaux, le Rapace, 1959, that displays in a naked and perfect body the person who will become from then on the artist’s muse, the artist represented as a monstrous hawk that is devouring her.

Based on this artwork, this exhibition will mainly be made up of major works on loan from prestigious institutions and artists, as well as a selection from the Bernard Magrez Collection: paintings, sculptures, photos, videos and installations. An ensemble of heterogeneous media to bring light to a contemporary itinerary of Beauty and the Beast in the salons of Château Labottière, transformed into a new space of visual poetry and emotions.

‘To live upright, to respect the other, to never give up, to gain temperance’, are the values that Bernard Magrez and the Institut Culturel wish to share with young artists through its exhibitions and its collection. Inscribed as an autograph on the front of the residency in neon letters, they are, in an eclectic manner, proof of the passionate view and singular experience of a man’s life, attached to the question of Beauty, to symbolism in art and the search for the universal. These are the values brought to light by the Masters and masterpieces of the Beauty and the Beast exhibition, a new journey of the Institut Culturel Bernard Magrez.

Adel Abdessemed, David Altmejd, Valérie Belin, Marie Bovo, Bernard Buffet, Mircea Cantor, Johan Creten, Wim Delvoye, Camille Henrot, Bharti Kher, Yves Klein, Rachel Labastie, Sigalit Landau, Liza Lou, René Magritte, André Masson, Boris Mikhailov, Moataz Nasr, Shirin Neshat, Jean-Michel Othoniel, Paola Pivi, Martial Raysse, Germaine Richier, Raqib Shaw, Djamel Tatah, Xavier Veilhan and Yang Fudong

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November 3, 2012

"Beauty and the Beast: Crossed Beauty in contemporary art" opens in Bordeaux

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