October 13, 2015–January 10, 2016
Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet is the first major U.S. exhibition to explore the introduction of art brut to America. The nearly two hundred works of art on view, by both canonical and lesser-known art brut figures, were amassed and identified as art brut by French artist Jean Dubuffet, beginning in 1945. The selection is drawn exclusively from the renowned Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne, Switzerland, where Dubuffet donated his collection in 1971.
The exhibition reflects on two seminal but unexplored moments in mid-twentieth century America: between 1952 and 1962, 1,200 works from Dubuffet’s art brut collection were displayed in the East Hampton estate of his friend, the artist and collector Alfonso Ossorio. Slightly prior to their installation, in December 1951, Dubuffet delivered a provocative speech titled “Anticultural Positions” at the Arts Club of Chicago, which challenged established ideas about art analysis and modes of creation.
The presentation highlights Dubuffet’s passionate belief in a new art paradigm that was non-Western and non-hierarchical, and that championed creators who are “uncontaminated by artistic culture.”
Organized in collaboration with the Collection de l’Art Brut, Lausanne, Switzerland. Curated by Valérie Rousseau, PhD, Curator, Self-Taught Art and Art Brut, American Folk Art Museum. An exhibition catalogue is available