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The influence of Germaine Richier on Philippe Hiquily

The Germaine Richier retrospective at the Centre Pompidou, which ended on June 12, 2023, honored this great figure of 20th-century sculpture.

An opportunity to highlight Richier's support and influence on Philippe Hiquily's career.

With his technical virtuosity and emaciated style, Richier invented a singular aesthetic that brought him early success.

On her return from Zurich in 1946, she became a source of inspiration for the younger generation of sculptors, teaching them in her studio at 36, avenue de Châtillon (14th arrondissement).

Among these artists, Philippe Hiquily benefited from her advice and benevolence from the time of his first meeting in 1954, when he had just graduated from the Beaux-Arts.

While Richier was exhibiting his retrospective at the Musée d'Art Moderne in Paris in 1956, she invited him to the Salon de Mai, introduced him to the critic Alain Jouffroy and commissioned him to make sellettes for the exhibition of his plumbs at the Galerie Creuzevault in 1959.

She was the first to give him his foot in the door.

Sellette (for Germaine Richier), 1959 reissued in 2006


H.114.5 x W.47 x D.44 cm

Although stylistically distant, Richier's influence would be profound in this desire to elaborate a formal hybridization paving the way for Hiquily to create his own universe in the late 1950s, blending biomorphism, eroticism and humor.

he theme of the insect-woman will be seen later in Hiquily's work in l'Épicurienne, created in 2010 and reminiscent of Richier's La Mante revisited.

Hiquily will always be grateful to his first supporter, immortalizing her in a tribute bust entitled Germaine.

Germaine, 1993

patinated brass

H.46 x W.16 x D. 12 cm


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