« What do you think an artist is? Nothing but eyes if a painter, nothing but ears if a musician, a heart filled with chimes if a poet, or, if a boxer, nothing but muscle?
On the contrary, an artist is also a political being, ever aware of the heartrending, burning, and fair events of the world, continuously fashioning himself in its image. »

Pablo Picasso

Discover in video and everyday during the Fair, at the lower level of the Carreau du Temple, the cultural exhibition “Socio-political drawing” curated by Philippe Piguet, artistic director of the Fair.
Video realized by Ouvretesyeux.

Tomi Ungerer, sans titre, 1967
Lavis d’encre de Chine et d’encres de couleur sur papier blanc
Collection musée Tomi Ungerer – Centre international, Strasbourg
© Diogenes Verlag AG Zürich \ Tomi Ungerer Photo : Musées de la Ville de Strasbourg.

Plantu’s drawing front-paged by the newspaper Le Monde on January 9th and entitled «Freedom is always the strongest», is a new take on Delacroix’s legendary painting, with all figures wielding pens instead of flagpoles, guns, or other weapons. Throughout history many artists have expressed their views on current affairs. DRAWING NOW has always echoed new developments within the realm of visual craft. Given recent events it appears necessary today, a time shaken to its core, to remember and pay tribute to contemporary art’s foothold in committed involvement. Hence, as highlighted by Picasso’s powerful remark, drawing’s sustained political commitment.

Whichever subject or form their work may take, many artists are indeed “political beings”. They thereby deeply echo Picasso’s historical remark. The famous painter of Guernica (1937) used his period’s news to revive the genre of history painting. Current times continue to provide contemporary artists with plenty of opportunity to share their views. Wars between nations, peoples’ freedom of expression, social deprivation, pressing issues about our environment, inequality, and more, provide multiform gateways for expression.

The exhibition “Socio-political Drawing” assembles an array of works from public and private collections that highlight the diversity of socio-political involvement over time. In 2015, DRAWING NOW PARIS’s purpose is to provide simple testimony to this commitment’s great qualities and artistic value.

Philippe Piguet