Avant-garde and inventive, Bertrand Lavier is included among some of the most striking artists of his generation, alongside Annette Messager and Christian Boltanski, particularly outside France, where he is often regarded as the most worthy successor to Marcel Duchamp. Calling into question the foundations of modernism, whilst also wielding a subtle humour, his work — which may at first glance seem straightforward — remains highly complex and fascinating. The acknowledgement of his role in the history of post-modernist art has found a particular resonance in the major exhibition devoted to him in the Centre Pompidou, late in 2012. With involvement from the artist himself, the National Museum of Modern Art in France explored his forty years of artistic production across roughly fifty iconic pieces. His “building sites”, which are still being reflected, include the crashed car Giuletta and La Bocca (The Lips), the famous sofa designed by Dalí, in pride of place upon a freezer.
Bertrand Lavier thus weakens the preconceptions of his visitors, shakes up reality, and reinvents the rules of conceptual art by seeking a more raw and sensitive human feeling, thanks to these non-conformities which the artist calls “the burglary of reality in the art gallery.”