HENRI BARANDE | SAATCHI GALLERY | 4 - 31 OCTOBER 2016
We are very proud to present the work of Henri Barande, curated by David Galloway. Henri Barande is an artist who pushes himself to extremes. His creativity first emerged when he was a child living in Tunisia in the shadow of the tombs of Carthage, and his practice is dedicated to exploring the dialogue between life and death, the found and the and has led to the creation of a world of miniature forms and figures and objets trouvés. To a large extent, these works have since been destroyed by his own hands or buried at an undisclosed location, carefully and purposefully concealed from view. Out of this seeming act of destruction has arisen a stunning array of monumental paintings. The Henri Barande exhibition will consist of an installation of 45 canvases and more than 25 sculptures, together creating a unique atmosphere that expresses the artist’s vision.
Despite the fact that his work is prolific, Barande seeks anonymity. His output remains largely unknown to the art establishment, since he resisted exhibiting his work for the first fifty years of his life. His paintings and sculptures are neither titled nor signed. They are also not for sale, existing in a world of their own. Free from material constraints, the artist devotes himself uncompromisingly to his artistic practice, at the same time literally disappearing behind his work and living through it alone.
Barande originally resolved never to exhibit his work in order to avoid the intrusive gaze of others, but also to draw closer to it himself, to scrutinise his work without pretence or indulgence, and even to be able to destroy it as he saw fit: to remain free, protecting his artistic expression from the curiosity of others. It was some fifteen years ago that the American curator David Galloway met the artist and made him aware of the powerful impact his work might have. The artist has set himself a strict rule, however, to exhibit only once in a single country. Hence, the exhibition will be the only chance to see his work in the UK in his lifetime.