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Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni

  • 205 Hudson Gallery 205 Hudson Street New York, NY, 10013 United States (map)

Installation view: Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni, Hunter College Art Galleries, 2016. Photo by: Bill Orcutt.

Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni

Curated by Joachim Pissarro and Annie Wischmeyer

February 27–April 10, 2016
Opening Reception: February 26, 6–8pm

205 Hudson Gallery
Hunter College Art Galleries
205 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10013

Hours: Wednesday–Sunday, 1–6pm

This exhibition marks the first critical examination of the significant, albeit brief, work of the BMPT Group, composed of Daniel Buren, Olivier Mosset, Michel Parmentier, and Niele Toroni in 1967.

On Christmas night, 1966, Buren, Mosset, Parmentier and Toroni drafted their first declaration, inviting the public to attend a demonstration at the 18th Salon de la Jeune Peinture, stating, “For the first time, on January 3, 1967, something will happen.” This event became the first in a series of “Manifestations”—events in various formats, at various locations in Paris. These events criticized the institutionalization and spectacularization of art as well as the public’s passivity, encouraging new modes of critical engagement that defied and denied older exhibition models.

Coming out of the political tumult of France in the 1960s, the activities of the group were not hermetic, isolated occurrences, but rather a response to the particular intellectual moment, one defined by radical philosophy and social unrest. While the legacy of each artist has fallen under the rubric of painting, this strict classification ignores the conceptual, political, and performative impetus in deference to medium. 

This exhibition seeks to reexamine the BMPT group by placing its work in context with the broader conversations surrounding institutional critique, performance, and the role of painting as a political medium.

The show also includes a work from 2010 by Hugo Pernet, Hugo Schuwer-Boss, and Frediric Sanchez titled “Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni n’exposent pas”—a contemporary iteration of the BMPT group’s infamous refrain from Manifestation 1.

In conjunction with “Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni” is “Critical Gestures & Contested Spaces: Art in France in the 1960s,” curated by Hunter College MA and MFA students. Coming out of a dual-semester course, working under the guidance of the HCAG curatorial team, the students conceived and executed the exhibition. 

This exhibition is made possible by the David Bershad Family Foundation and Susan V. Bershad Charitable Fund, Inc.; The Brant Foundation, Inc.; Arthur and Carol Kaufman Goldberg; Andrew and Christine Hall; The Hunter College Foundation; Stephen King, C12 Capital Management; Anna Maria and Stephen Kellen Foundation; President Jennifer J. Raab; and an anonymous donor.