Paris is known for its classical architecture. But this foundation of beauty doesn’t prevent the city from evolving as a showcase of modernity. This comes in many forms. One such form is a little-known sculpture by Brut ‘outsider’ artist Dubuffet. Once you’ve spotted it, Paris clearly becomes a city recognised for being able to balance modern forms alongside its classical features.
Le Reseda sculpture by Dubuffet is relatively unknown because of where it’s situated. It sits almost hidden from view in Paris’ Caisse de Depot, awkwardly plonked in their courtyard, as if landed from outer-space. I spotted the sculpture by chance when I had been cycling by the river Seine along Quai Voltaire, checking for oncoming traffic. So I stopped and walked my bike over to the open gates of Caisse de Depot. And seeing no guard patrol I strolled into the courtyard.
The sculpture is an imposing white mass at a striking 6-metres in height. That’s 4 people standing balancing on one another’s shoulders. Monumental in fact. A monumental hunk of white debris and accented with thick-lines in red and blue. These primary colours send jolts out into the classical architecture it invades. Jolting you between the idea of different epochs – 19th and 20th centuries.
To discover Le Reseda stroll along Quai Voltaire from Pont des Arts (Lovelock bridge) in the direction of Musée d’Orsay. Keeping your sight-line turned slightly left.
Le Reseda | Art & culture
Courtyard entrance, Caisse des depot et consignments, (via Quai Anatole France)
Tue – Sat 10:00 – 18:00