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Bernar Venet (French, b.b. 1941)
Also known as: Vernet, BernarBirth Place: Saint Auban (Alpes-Maritimes, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France)
Bernar Venet is known around the world today as a notable Conceptual artist and sculptor of monumental art. He was born in 1941 in Château-Arnoux-Saint-Auban, France. At an early age, he was introduced to art by a local artist, devotedly painting and drawing by the age of ten. He studied at Ecole Libre and Groupe Scolaire Paul Lapie from 1955 to 1958, and he furthered his artistic studies at La Villa Thiole in Nice, France. He became a stage designer for the Opera de Nice in 1959, and in 1961 he joined the French Army and began what he called his “fetishist works,” in which Venet used tar and painted gestural works with his feet. He opened a studio to continue his tar art when he returned to Nice in 1963.
Venet was deeply influenced by the Minimalist works when first visiting New York in 1966. Mathematics and logic became a passion of his during this period, as well, and he used the concepts and practices in his own art, exploring the various ways in which math and logic could expand and add a whole other dimension to the definition of art and art making. Venet did not create any work from 1971 to 1976, but instead spent his time travelling and teaching throughout Europe. In the 1980s, he worked on various projects, including bringing to production his ballet entitled Graduation, with the help of Jean-Louis Martinoty, at the Paris Opera. Venet is most well-known for his Indeterminate Lines and Arcs series. He continues to create art in all media today and has exhibited his work all over the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janiero, Brazil.
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