Saturday, September 26, 2009

Centre Pompidou- Niki de Saint Phalle

So, during my 5 weeks in Paris, I finally went to the modern art museum, Centre Pompidou, when I was in despair-type stupor. I spent nearly 7 hours there, by myself, and it was one of the best experiences of my life. Needless to say, my perspective on the day changed. The exhibits on Level 4 offered pieces by women artists. The first painting I saw was one of Niki de Saint Phalle's Shooting Paintings, as they call it.

"(From shooting painting consisted of a wooden base board on which containers of paint were laid, then covered with plaster. The painting was then raised and de Saint Phalle would shoot at it with a .22 caliber rifle. The bullets penetrated paint containers, which spilled their contents over the painting."

As an painter who often feels quite reserved and repressed, this idea resonated with represented such a new form of expression in art, to convery the anger and frustration. I remember hearing on the headset I was listening to that she said she felt such joy and release while shooting the paintings. In another quote, she said, "Why did I give up the shooting after only two years? I felt like a drug addict. After a shoot-out I felt completely stoned. I became hooked on this macabre yet joyous ritual."

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