American art lovers are generally unfamiliar with the artists associated with Nouveau Réalisme, France’s analog to 1960s Pop Art. Martial Raysse‘s work was arguably the most Pop-like of the whole group, often depicting glamorous women, much as Warhol did. In typical Gallic fashion, however, Raysse eschewed Warhol’s celebration of Hollywood for a tone that was darker and more redolent of existential dread.
The exhibition features two of Raysse’s reprisals of iconic masterpieces, selections from the group of works known informally as his ‘Made in Japan’ series. Appropriating canvases by such figures as Ingres, Cranach, Gérard and Tintoretto, Raysse deployed photomontage, assemblage, neon and a garish palette to deform and degrade cherished emblems of high culture.
This is not one to be missed, the exhibition is currently on at Luxembourg & Dayan gallery located on the upper east side of Manhattan.