Bernar Venet - Les Origines / 1961-1966

Bernar Venet - Les Origines / 1961-1966

The Bernar Venet- Les Origines / 1961-1966 catalog presents a selection of major artworks by the artist.

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Today recognized as one of the most prominent French artists, Bernar Venet’s work is exhibited worldwide. While his monumental steel sculptures are internationally famous, his early works from the late 1960’s are little known by the general public.


He started experimenting with material at the age of 20 with the Goudrons [1] series. He then sublimated this medium with Reliefs Carton [2], shooting his pieces with glycerophtalic paint, which covered all traces of the artist’s subjectivity and personality.


It was at the same time that he introduced the innovative process of letting collectors or assistants choose the colors of his paintings, thus distancing the artist from his creations. By preferring asphalt and industrial varnish to oil painting, he broke with the abstract and gestural pictorial academism of his time.


During that period, he made his first sound recording of a wheelbarrow moving over a gravel path entitled Gravier Goudron. This work announced the conceptual approach he later developed in New York. The foundation of his work was laid.

[1] Tar.

[2] Cardboard reliefs.

Bernar Venet - Les Origines

Data sheet

Number of pages
28 x 28 cm
Publication date

Venet (Bernar)

Bernar Venet (born in 1941 in France) is a visual artist. In 1958, he joined the Villa Thiole in Nice and then became assistant set designer at the Opera of Nice. In 1966, he moved to New York where he painted and sculpted mostly wood and steel. His steel sculptures (or “Indeterminate Lines”) were exhibited in many urban spaces across France and worldwide.

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