From February 16 to June 20, 2022, the Pompidou Center is devoting an exhibition to Charles Ray, one of the leading artists of contemporary American sculpture.

charles ray sculpture
Charles Ray Unpainted Sculpture 1997 Painted fiberglass. Based on a real wrecked Pontiac Grand AM car Copyright Charles Ray

A major figure of American sculpture

This major event organized with the artist proposes to discover the symbolic works of his creation revealing his reflections and questions. Designed as a walk, it invites discovery and challenges. A major figure in contemporary American sculpture, Charles Ray (born in Chicago in 1953, living and working in Los Angeles) is exhibited for the first time in a French public institution. Imagined in dialogue with the artist, this exhibition offers, through a set of works representative of his journeys, a walk through a landscape to be inhabited as much by the body as by the spirit.

puzzle bottle by charles ray
Puzzle bottle – Copyright Charles Ray

What is a sculpture ?

Charles Ray’s corpus, if limited in quantity (a hundred objects to date) is extremely rich. His work questions the viewer: what is a sculpture? The artist’s responses are multiple. Thanks to a deep knowledge of the history of sculptural art, from archaic Greek sculptures to the creations of his contemporaries, the work of Charles Ray is distinguished by its immediacy. The Bourse de Commerce — Pinault Collection is devoting an exhibition to the artist during the same period, conceived in close collaboration with the Center Pompidou. These two events offer complementary readings as well as a common and detailed publication of the work of Charles Ray, published by the Center Pompidou under the direction of Jean-Pierre Criqui and Caroline Bourgeois.

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