spirit of place

artist & writer

Born in 1932, Henri Maccheroni became known in the sixties for his large post-surrealist, biomorphic canvases. Later, in various series of paintings, such as Unfinished Worlds and The Night Ones, he systematically attempted to question the myths of Western art, and to design each work as a blueprint for a new form of aesthetic writing. During the seventies, he developed and theorized a new genre of "socio-critical" art (Cupboard with Bottles, Gift for the Partisans of the Death Penalty). Since 1968, photography has become an important part of his oeuvre. One of his most famous series consists of 2000 photographs of the sex of a woman. Other series include Skull-Meditations and several Great Archaeologies. Photography is involved in many of his collages (Manhattan-Grey). Maccheroni also works with engraving (etching, dry-point, heliogravure) as well as watercolour and ink-washes. In 1982 he co-founded the National Centre of Contemporary Art in Nice. As a painter, photographer and engraver, Maccheroni has collaborated with numerous poets and writers such as Michel Butor, Jean-François Lyotard, Pierre Bourgeade and Claude Louis-Combet. His work has been featured in many journals including Obliques, Nue, Artitude and Phase. He has been widely exhibited in Europe and in 2006 featured in an exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery in London. The exhibition in the Wren Library, Trinity College, Cambridge in May 2007, organised by Jean Khalfa, was the first major British retrospective of his work.


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