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Jean Tinguely, le Cyclop

Centre national des arts plastiques

This huge head with one single eye, covered with broken glass, full of metal and sound mechanisms in the forest of Fontainebleau, is the target today of strolls through the woods. In the 1970s and 1980s, it was a wild, outlawed project, the target of threats and depredations. Built without a building permit, in part on a piece of land he did not own, the Cyclope only owed his survival to the solidarity of all the creators who participated in his construction: Tinguely, of course, its designer, and - especially after his death (in 1991)- Niki de Saint-Phalle, who carried it through to the end, and all those who left their mark: Jesus Rafael Soto, Jean-Pierre Raynaud, Arman, Daniel Spoerri, Daniel Luginbuhl. Without forgetting the pyrotechnicians, the welders-artists, who assembled tons of scrap iron picked up on train tracks or on the construction site of the Centre Pompidou, such as Toso, Seppi Imhof or Rico Weber. Prior to becoming a practically official monument, the Cyclope was, for Tinguely, a «utopia in the forest». This is the era the book brings back to life.

• Jean Tinguely, le Cyclop, Centre national des arts plastiques, Isthme publishing house, 2007, 200 p., ISBN : 978 –2-35409-007-4, 19.80 €

Jean Tinguely, le Cyclop - Centre national des arts plastiques

Review published in the newsletter #53 - from 28 June 2007 to 4 July 2007

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