This is the second version of the exhibition “Buffet and the 1940s and 1950s – Art Confronts the Absurd”.
Buffet’s early period work, produced through the 1950s, used motifs such as solitary, towering human figures or skinned animals suspended in midair executed ina consistent, controlled tone combined with lines boldly slashing across the canvas. At the end of the 1940s, the flourishing jazz music scene at cafes and bars in Saint-Germain-des-Pré embodied the freedom of liberated Paris, and young people were inspired by Jean-Paul Sartre’s existentialism.
In the art world, a stream of artists passionately searched for their own unique modes of expression in a space where the scent of the École de Paris still lingered. Buffet’s early work reflects the explosive energy of this period in which intelligence and passion, refinement and crudity overlapped. This exhibition explores both the background to Buffet’s early work and what it is that gives these paintings their enormous impact.
Here you can enjoy the powerful resonance between the young Buffet’s tableaux and the era in which he produced these works.