Born in Paris in 1926, Yvon Taillandier revealed his talent for drawing from the age of 13. He exhibited his first portraits in 1942 at the “Art Français” gallery in Lyon.
Figurative and narrative, his work is as much to be seen as to be read. He calls it “liberating figuration”, the viewer “feels as free as the artist, and even more so”. His voluntarist, radical vision, concerns as much the world of magic as it does politics or fantasy.
He uses all types of media: canvas, cardboard, paper, newspaper, wood, clothing, walls, furniture, suitcases, pottery, books, banners, cars, frescos for public buildings, etc. A committed artist, he uses the movements that existed during the second half of the 20th century to express himself: the decolonization, anti-apartheid, peace and Human Rights movements, etc.
At 91 years old, Yvon Taillandier is considered as the father of the “free figuration” embodied by many artists, in particular Robert Combas, Keith Harring, Jean Michel Basquiat, Hervé Di Rosa, etc.
Is the imaginary world of Yvon Taillandier so far from us? What do these surprising “multiple organed, headed, armed, bodied, and footed” characters who inspire “a feeling of ingenuity, or even cunning and delight” as Yvon Taillandier describes it, evoke for us?
Is Taillandier-land an implausible nation inhabited by Taillandier-landers with crazy anatomy, linked to each other “by tubes, sometimes load-bearing, sometimes enveloping”, that might just be ordinary artificial lines?
by Laurent Chabas, 15 November 2016