Centre Pompidou, Paris (FR)    4 October 2023 - 26 February 2024

Gilles Aillaud. Animal politique

The Animal Politique retrospective at the Centre Pompidou presents the work of Gilles Aillaud through his paintings of giraffes, lions and seals, often in captivity. Although it may seem as if he was depicting animals, it is our relationship with nature that is his only real subject. To mark the occasion, the Fondation Gandur pour l'Art lend a work by the artist: Grille et grillage (1971).

Curator: Didier Ottinger

When asked why he chose to paint almost exclusively animals, Gilles Aillaud replied "because I love them". Contemporary with the first pop works and their more or less distant fascination with consumer products and mass communication, Gilles Aillaud's subjects could appear exotic. Today's questions about our relationship with the living make his iconography less incongruous, and underline the importance of this retrospective. This long-awaited exhibition is an opportunity to (re)discover Gilles Aillaud's work. The manifest objectivity of his art makes him the putative father of a new generation of artists fascinated by a realism borrowed from modern image technologies. Gilles Aillaud became a painter because he was unable to become a philosopher. From his early training, his painting has inherited a hybrid nature, the equivalent of what the Chinese tradition called: a literate painting.

Work on loan

Grille et grillage