Potted plants have no place in these worksOne of the functions of a pot is to grow plants; it is usually round in shape and the top is open so it can be filled with soil and seeds. However, from a slightly different perspective what if the top of the pot were closed? Would it lose its function? For Jean-Pierre Raynaud, 68, a French sculptor, the answer is no. In fact, for Raynaud, it becomes a form of art. The Columns gallery in Cheongdam-dong, southern Seoul, is holding a exhibition of Raynaud’s strange pots, titled “Le Pot Dore” (The Golden Pot).
Fourteen of Raynaud’s pots have been installed inside the gallery along with paintings such as Andy Warhol’s “Gold Marilyn Monroe.” Raynaud says the gold color of Manroe’s hair in the painting reflects the golden colored pot and creates a sense of unity.
It was in the 1960s that Raynaud first came up with the idea of transforming an ordinary object into art ― the approach was named Nouveau Realism by critics.
At a time when Raynaud was suffering from mental distress in the aftermath of his service during the Algerian War, he came across a flower pot in his garage. He filled the inside with cement (as an act of blocking all forms of life) and painted the outside with red paint.
The pots gradually became synonymous with Raynaud’s name and were displayed in prominent places, such as “Le Pot Dore” in the Forbidden City of Peking and “Pot Rouge” (Red Pot) at the Centre Pompidou in Paris.
Depending on where each pot is displayed, they elicit different emotions and reactions from viewers.
The exhibition “Le Pot Dore” is taking place at The Columns gallery located in Cheongdam-dong (Cheongdam Station, line No. 7, exit 9) until mid-July. For information, call (02) 3442-6301 or visit www.columns.co.kr.
By Lee Eun-joo Contributing Writer [firstname.lastname@example.org]