Amazing art galleries in The South of France for Art Lovers
1) Galerie Catherine Issert
Galerie Catherine Issert stands out among the many galleries in Saint-Paul-de-Vence in a good way. Issert founded the gallery in 1975, representing exciting contemporary established as well as emerging artists from France and abroad. She mainly specialises in sculpture and paintings, which she shows in her simple, nice and spacious gallery at the entrance to the village. Artists who have already exhibited here include John M. Armleder, Ben (Vautier), Tatiana Wolska, Claude Viallat, Bernard Pagès and Anne Pesce.
2) Fondation Linda et Guy Pieters
The Belgian gallerists and art collectors Linda and Guy Pieters opened their own Fondation in July 2018 in a beautifully renovated three-storey building in Place des Lices in the heart of Saint-Tropez. They see it as the crowning achievement of their thirty-year career, showcasing the work of the many artists with whom they have a long-standing working relationship. The conceptual artist Christo, famous for his ephemeral wrapped installations, and his Mastaba in London’s Hyde Park, was the subject of the opening exhibition. Subsequent shows featured work by Arman, Jan Fabre, Jean-Michel Folon, Robert Combas, Gilbert & George, and Ben (Vautier).
3) La Station
La Station is a nomadic art initiative, holding the middle between a gallery and an art centre. It originally occupied a former petrol station, hence the name. La Station has since moved to another quirky, industrial location: a former cold- storage warehouse, owned by the city of Nice, close to the marshalling yard of Nice-Saint-Roch station. The 1000-square- metre space is used for exhibitions of the work of emerging artists but is also home to twelve studios. They regularly organise open studios here in addition to artist-in-residence programmes, so artists can create and show their work there on a long-term basis. Famous artists whose work has been exhibited here include Laure Prouvost, Heimo Zobernig, Monster Chetwynd and Brice Dellsperger.
4) Eva Vautier
Eva Vautier founded her gallery in 2011 in the Quartier Libération, a lively nightlife district to the north of Nice-Ville railway station, which was undergoing a transformation when she decided to settle here. Besides solo shows – she represents, among others, her father, the artist Ben (Vautier) – Eva also presents retrospectives of the Fluxus movement and the Supports/Surfaces art collective. The gallery regularly hosts ‘duo’ exhibitions, with one artist inviting another. Eva Vautier also produces art books, editions and multiples, as well as engravings and lithographs, all of which are for sale in the gallery.
5) Latuvu Art Contemporain
Bages is a beautiful and tranquil little village, consisting of a steep street lined with houses, just a short distance from Narbonne and overlooking the Étang de Sigean. Not exactly the place where you’d expect to find an art gallery. And yet. A couple of years ago, Belgian artists Sabine Friederichs and Herman Vansynghel decided this was the place where they wanted to present their curated selection of French, Italian, Dutch and Belgian artists. They show their work in temporary exhibitions at the Latuvu gallery (an alternative spelling for ‘L’as-tu vu?’, meaning ‘did you see it?’). Once a year the couple also invites an artist in residence to create new work on location, inspired by the surroundings. Definitely worth the detour.
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The South of France for Art Lovers is one of the spin-off titles of The 500 Hidden Secrets series of essential city guides. This guide focusses on one particular aspect of the region of the South of France.
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