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Simon Hantaï

Simon Hantaï, Meun, 1968 Oil on canvas, 89 ¾ × 80 ⅜ inches (228 × 204.2 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Simon Hantaï, Meun, 1968

Oil on canvas, 89 ¾ × 80 ⅜ inches (228 × 204.2 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1969 Oil and acrylic on canvas, 115 ⅞ × 178 ⅜ inches (294.2 × 453 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Simon Hantaï, Étude, 1969

Oil and acrylic on canvas, 115 ⅞ × 178 ⅜ inches (294.2 × 453 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–84 Acrylic on canvas, 87 ⅜ × 72 ⅞ inches (222 × 185 cm)© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Simon Hantaï, Laissée, 1981–84

Acrylic on canvas, 87 ⅜ × 72 ⅞ inches (222 × 185 cm)
© Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

About

Known for his kaleidoscopic abstract works, Simon Hantaï (1922–2008) originated the technique of pliage (folding), in which a canvas is crumpled and knotted, uniformly painted over, and then spread out to reveal a matrix of alternations between pigment and ground. Born in Bia, Hungary, Hantaï studied at the Budapest School of Fine Arts from 1941 to 1946. In 1948 he moved to Paris after receiving a government grant to study there; after his grant was later revoked in the wake of the escalating Sovietization of his homeland, he decided to stay. In Paris, he met André Breton in December 1952 and quickly became associated with the Parisian Surrealists, completing several fantastical animal-themed paintings before encountering the work of Jackson Pollock and breaking with the Surrealist ideologies in 1955. Pollock’s action paintings and the work of the Abstract Expressionists directly inspired Hantaï’s own turn toward monumentally scaled abstraction.

Hantaï began creating pliage paintings in 1960, conceiving of the process as a marriage between Surrealist automatism and the allover gestures of Abstract Expressionism. The technique dominated the work he made during the rest of his career, re-emerging in diverse forms—sometimes as a network of crisp creases of unpainted canvas spanning the composition, and at other times as a monochrome mass manifesting in the center of an unprimed canvas. Hantaï left Paris and moved to Meun, France, in 1966, becoming a French citizen that year. He gained increasing recognition in France throughout the 1960s and 1970s, culminating in his selection as the country’s representative at the 1982 Venice Biennale. Months later, however, he withdrew from the public eye and chose not to exhibit new works until 1998, when he ended his self-imposed retreat. In 2008 Hantaï died at his home in Paris, leaving behind a corpus of fractal-like compositions whose surfaces exist in flux between deliberate and arbitrary mark making.

Fairs, Events & Announcements

Installation view, Simon Hantaï: Accrochage, Gagosian, rue de Ponthieu, Paris, April 5–May 28, 2022. Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Installation

Simon Hantaï
Accrochage

April 5–May 28, 2022
Gagosian, rue de Ponthieu, Paris

Gagosian, Paris, is pleased to present a selection of paintings by Simon Hantaï (1922–2008). In anticipation of his forthcoming retrospective at Fondation Louis Vuitton, curated by Anne Baldassari and opening on May 18, 2022, these works will be installed on the ground floor of the gallery at 4 rue de Ponthieu. The grouping, which is dominated by bold, vibrant colors evocative of spring blossoms, features several paintings made by Hantaï using variations on his iconic pliage (folding) technique.

Installation view, Simon Hantaï: Accrochage, Gagosian, rue de Ponthieu, Paris, April 5–May 28, 2022. Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

Gagosian’s booth at Art Basel Hong Kong 2022. Artwork, left to right: © Georg Baselitz; © Louise Bonnet; © Zeng Fanzhi; © 2019 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved; © Rudolf Stingel. Photo: Martin Wong

Art Fair

Art Basel Hong Kong 2022

May 27–29, 2022, booth 1C15
Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre
www.artbasel.com

Gagosian is pleased to participate in Art Basel Hong Kong 2022 with an ensemble of contemporary works by international artists. The gallery’s presentation will feature works by artists including Georg BaselitzLouise BonnetEdmund de WaalUrs FischerKatharina GrosseMark GrotjahnJennifer GuidiSimon HantaïHao LiangDamien HirstThomas HouseagoTetsuya IshidaAlex IsraelEwa JuszkiewiczRick LoweTakashi MurakamiAlbert OehlenNam June PaikGiuseppe PenoneRudolf PolanszkySterling RubyEd RuschaJenny SavilleJim ShawRudolf StingelSpencer SweeneyRachel Whiteread, and Zeng Fanzhi.

Gagosian’s booth at Art Basel Hong Kong 2022. Artwork, left to right: © Georg Baselitz; © Louise Bonnet; © Zeng Fanzhi; © 2019 Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd. All rights reserved; © Rudolf Stingel. Photo: Martin Wong

Georg Baselitz, No, ja, 2020 © Georg Baselitz. Photo: Jochen Littkemann

Art Fair

ART021 Shanghai 2021

November 13–14, 2021, booth C02
Shanghai Exhibition Center
www.art021.org

Gagosian is pleased to participate in ART021 Shanghai 2021. The gallery will feature works by artists including Georg BaselitzDan ColenEdmund de WaalRoe EthridgeUrs FischerKatharina GrosseSimon HantaïDamien HirstJia AiliHarmony Korine, Takashi Murakami (as an individual artist and in collaboration with Virgil Abloh), Rudolf StingelSpencer Sweeney, and Tatiana Trouvé

To receive a pdf with detailed information on the works, please contact the gallery at inquire@gagosian.com.

Georg Baselitz, No, ja, 2020 © Georg Baselitz. Photo: Jochen Littkemann

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Museum Exhibitions

Installation view, Touching the Void, Museum of Modern Art, New York, November 14, 2020–November 1, 2023. Artwork, left to right: © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2021; © Carlos Rojas; © 2021 Robert Ryman; © 2021 Fundación Gego; © Liliana Porter. Photo: Jonathan Muzikar

On View

Simon Hantaï in
Touching the Void

Through November 1, 2023
Museum of Modern Art, New York
www.moma.org

As part of New Art from Wall to Wall, the Museum of Modern Art is presenting never-before and rarely shown works in themed, reimagined collection galleries. The gallery Touching the Void explores an important artistic tendency of the 1960s: a shift away from the idea that art should express the artist’s interior life. Works in this vein searched for a poetics of bare form and focused on structural elements such as line, plane, and volume. Whether strict or playful, the work of these artists tested the meditative possibilities of objectivity, challenging viewers to heighten their sensory perception. Work by Simon Hantaï is included.

Installation view, Touching the Void, Museum of Modern Art, New York, November 14, 2020–November 1, 2023. Artwork, left to right: © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2021; © Carlos Rojas; © 2021 Robert Ryman; © 2021 Fundación Gego; © Liliana Porter. Photo: Jonathan Muzikar

Installation view, The Shape of Freedom: International Abstraction after 1945, Museum Barberini, Potsdam, Germany, June 4–September 25, 2022. Artwork, left to right: © The Estate of Morris Louis/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn, Germany 2022; © 2022 Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

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The Shape of Freedom
International Abstraction after 1945

June 4–September 25, 2022
Museum Barberini, Potsdam, Germany
www.museum-barberini.de

The Shape of Freedom examines the creative interplay between Abstract Expressionism and Art Informel in transatlantic exchange and dialogue, from the mid-1940s to the end of the Cold War. Exploring radically impulsive approaches to form, color, and material, the exhibition includes more than ninety works by nearly fifty artists with loans from museums worldwide. Work by Willem de Kooning, Helen Frankenthaler, and Simon Hantaï is included.

Installation view, The Shape of Freedom: International Abstraction after 1945, Museum Barberini, Potsdam, Germany, June 4–September 25, 2022. Artwork, left to right: © The Estate of Morris Louis/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn, Germany 2022; © 2022 Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, Inc./Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York

Installation view, Simon Hantaï: L’exposition du centenaire, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, May 18–August 29, 2022. Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2022. Photo: © Fondation Louis Vuitton/Marc Domage

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Simon Hantaï
L’exposition du centenaire

May 18–August 29, 2022
Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris
www.fondationlouisvuitton.fr

To celebrate the centenary of the artist’s birth, the Fondation Louis Vuitton presents a retrospective exhibition devoted to the work of Simon Hantaï (1922–2008). Curated by Anne Baldassari, the exhibition includes more than 130 works, the majority of which are large-format pieces from 1957 to 2000, and many of which have never before been shown. Installed alongside the works by Hantaï are works by other major artists including Henri Matisse and Jackson Pollock, whose artistic influences were decisive in Hantaï’s development, and Michel Parmentier and Daniel Buren, who were Hantaï’s peers in the 1960s scene at the Cité des Fleurs in Paris.

Installation view, Simon Hantaï: L’exposition du centenaire, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris, May 18–August 29, 2022. Artwork © Archives Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris, 2022. Photo: © Fondation Louis Vuitton/Marc Domage

Installation view, Nouvelles perspectives: Collections XXe/XXIe siècles, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, France, May 19, 2021–March 13, 2022. Artwork © Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

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Nouvelles perspectives
Collections XXe/XXIe siècles

May 19, 2021–March 13, 2022
Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, France
www.mba-lyon.fr

This presentation of recent acquisitions to the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon’s twentieth- and twenty-first-century collections explores color, figuration, and abstract landscapes, creating a series of dialogues between artists already present in the collection and those whose work has just entered it. Work by Francis Bacon and Simon Hantaï is included.

Installation view, Nouvelles perspectives: Collections XXe/XXIe siècles, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, France, May 19, 2021–March 13, 2022. Artwork © Simon Hantaï/ADAGP, Paris

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