paris

Ben

Galerie Baudoin Lebon

Ben’s “Thirteen Sculptures” show included some 50 paintings, readymades, assemblages, toys, machines, and other gadgets meant not only to be looked at, read, and listened to, but also written on, pushed, pulled, pedaled, and eaten. The resulting ambiance was somewhere between garage sale and day-care center, and it is worth noting that, in addition to the regular gallery-goers, there was a steady stream of toddlers-to-teens, and no one looked bored. Worth noting, too, that Ben ( né Vautier) began his career as the proprietor of a second-hand-store-cum-gallery in the late ’50s; that for more than 30 years, his Duchampian vision of “total art” has been continuously reincarnated in the form of objects, actions, Happenings, performances, and self-published tomes; and that from his resolutely provincial perch in Nice, he has become, through a combination of insight, wit, and sheer tenacity,

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