Jacques Villeglé

Quimper, 1926 – Paris, 2022

Jacques Villeglé was born in 1926 in Quimper, France. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Rennes, where in 1945 he met Raymond Hains, with whom he established a long friendship. Studying architecture in Nantes, in 1949 he decided to devote himself completely to artistic creation, retrieving lacerated posters from the streets of Paris, often covered in writing or affixed one on top of the other, and highlighting parts of the underlying poster with the décollage technique.

Villeglé is universally recognised as the creator of the lacerated ‘affiches’, a material with which he wants to implement a profound reflection on our contemporary society. Together with Hains and François Dufrêne, he founded the Affiches group, which was later joined by Arman and Mimmo Rotella.

In 1960, Villeglé joined the Nouveau Réalistes movement, founded by the critic Pierre Restany – with, among others, Martial Raysse, Yves Klein, Arman, Tinguely, Raymond Hains, François Dufrêne and Daniel Spoerri – which started with the first group exhibition at the Galleria Apollinaire in Milan.

Since his first solo show at the Galerie Colette Allendy in Paris in 1957, Villeglé has exhibited in the world’s most important museums, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York; the Tate Gallery in London; the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, which dedicated a major retrospective to him in 2008. His works have been acquired by the most renowned international museums.

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