Bernard Pages

Galerie d’Art Contemporain des Musées de Nice

Bernard Pagès belongs to the generation of Claude Viallat, Louis Cane, and Jean-Pierre Pincemin. An exhibition of the New Realists in 1967 was the point of departure for his current work; the geometric qualities he had borrowed from Constantin Brancusi and the abstract lyrical sculpture of the postwar period gave way to an occupation with the rural terrain of his childhood. Pagès systematically made use of its mining materials: branches, bricks, cord, wire, corrugated iron, pipes, boards, and metal rods (a relationship to Arte Povera has since been seen here). Out of these media were created series of succinct combinations or “arrangements.” Here we must, as did Barthes in the ’60s, speak about “structuralist activity.” Like some painters of 1967–69, Pagès aimed at reconstructing an “object”—in other words, at making apparent and intelligible the rules of construction that, up until then,

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