François Morellet French, 1926 -2016


A self-taught artist, Morellet (b. 1926 - d. 2016 Cholet, France) first exhibited his geometric tone-in-tone pictures in 1950 at the Galerie Creuze in Paris. In the mid-1950s he was preoccupied with configuring the picture field as an infinite structure reaching beyond the confines of the picture itself, superimposing painted grids realised in wire-‘Trames’, then later working with neon forms, some of which can be activated by the spectator.


Morellet created his own systems, in which he includes the elements of chance and whimsy to counteract even more with the arbitarriness of any decision of artistic order. In 1960 Morellet co-founded GRAV (Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel: 1960-1968), a group of kinetic artists including Julio Le Parc who explored the possibilities of the visual arts in a scientific and experimental way.


From 1968 François Morellet became interested in architecture and public spaces. He was given commissions for the Centre Culturel in Compiègne, a section of La Défense in Paris and the Kröller-Müller Museum Park in Otterlo.


Selected recent solo exhibitions included; Henri Chotteau legacy: François Morellet, SMAK, Ghent, 2014; François Morellet: du Pompidou Mobile au MuMa, Musée d'art moderne André Malraux, Le Havre, 2013; François Morellet: Lamentable, Kunstverein Ruhr e.V., Essen, 2012; François Morellet, Daegu Art Museum, Daegu, 2011; François Morellet: Réinstallations, Centre Pompidou Musée National d´Art Moderne, Paris, 2011 and François Morellet, L'esprit d'escalier, Musée du Louvre, Paris, 2010. From October 2017 to June 2018 the Dia Art Foundation, New York held a major retrospective on the artist.