The creation years


note pour expo premières lignes

Life and work are inseparable. Works with a strong content load speak by themselves. Their gestation however, can be lit up with few comments about mishaps of the sculptor's existence.

Sensations stored during childhood feed the work and I can feel resurgences of the native Velay. Visions of Norman Auvergne with its idols, its hieratic madonnas close to african art, its carolingian jewels, its treasures in squat basilicas, the altarpieces, the secret shrines have given birth to the brass works spirit.
fer blanc peintIn 1985 Comby writes to Mrs Rocher- Jauneau, curator of the Lyon museum. His letter is some sort of finalization where he gives important  keys to understand his work.


In the same time, familiar cohabitation with death, either in the graveyard or in the slaughterhouses, leaves on you a deep and longlasting impression. I studied close to hanging open, cut up beasts and the carcasses in the paternal laboratory tought me the complexity of internal structures as well as the harsh content of violence.

Frequenting natural history reviews or the rooms with war armours certainly influenced the long series of big plasterworks, destroyed today, the paintings and drawings and the metal shells, some shields against agressions..
laiton lyon

 pierre jardin

Looks on the spatial world, through aeronotic shows or shots of Man on the moon, materialize in collages, in the necessity of working temporarily on the machine tools. That did'nt keep me away from the chisel or from the stone.
The 2000 drawings in the sketch books have been imprinted by the encounters, as travels went, with the portraits of Fayoun, Donatello, Grûnewald, Jannitzer, Pierre Puget, Gaudi, Rodin as well as by present works of Raymond Mason, Ipousteguy,Rustin or Roseline Granet.

Finally, listening to the world  as it is, with its suite of misfortunes, disasters, starvation, of insane arms race leading to endless and numerous wars, only strengthens the sharp tensions and interrogations included.

 grosse tête fer blanc

crochet athéna  The Athenas, war godesses with their humorous as much as fierce defenders, do not follow from fantasies but from hard daily truthes, it would be easier, I know, to hide behind a more idyllic and neutral exterior. I made choices which, of course, are not in fashion. I take upon myself the marginalization consequences of them, in the cultural jungle.


Further to my distant experience in  those big common rooms in Laennec Hospital, I had discovered the happy and contagious mood of some patients, making in match boxes, funny little people animated with a string, their tits or willies moving by fits and starts.

Quite a way to kill time, to spend it with no excessive mortification on the briefness of human adventures but in creating conviviality and dream.
Thirty five years later - either life runs too fast, or my neurones are slow - the fact remains that a logical conclusion suggested itself as hours of cutting the stone or engraving the bronze went : I mean the urgent need to share, with those who go round in circles with boredom, the privileged instants , when all, men and women, discover with surprise they are mentally ill.

They find some pleasure in unusual and new experiences, in spite of botchings, as they Further to my distant experience in  those big common rooms in Laennec Hospital, I had discovered the happy and ccultivate dream and assert themselves more autonomous, after tangible results in theatre, music, writing or arts called "plastic".

A simple short sentence : "the common man at work" ( a title of a book by Jean Dubuffet). I announce my predilections and sources. For this adventure integrates itself into a quest dating from the beginning of the century, with the collections made by psychiatrists in Albi and Villejuif in 1908, of bizarre and exceptional works.

In 1920 Hanz Prinzhorn collects 6000 works. Later Dubuffet accumulates a phenomenal collection of works by marginalized , or considered "insane" people, donated to the "primitive art" museum in Lausanne.

Léo Navratif, writes a superb book about the works by the patients of Gugging village near Vienna, in Austria and the organization "the blue horse" in Vienna should not be forgotten.
At last, the most intense and mad creation of a modest postman, a visionary, the "facteur Cheval". Surrounded with these unforgettable predecessors, I will be abe to tackle our common experience in the Pierrefeu psychiatric hospital. This is the story of a challenge, for the experience, at the beginning, involved its part of fragility, doubt, contradiction.

The strength of "brut art"

Musée Prinzhorn


Coll. Prinzhorn


(Musée de l'Art Brut Lausanne)

Aloise, Musée de l 'art brut Lausanne
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