Bernar Venet Wins 2016 Lifetime Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award

A new Venet sculpture is coming to Union Square.

The French sculptor Bernar Venet received the 2016 Lifetime Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award in New York on Monday. The award honors the careers of major sculptors.

French-born Venet rose to prominence in New York, where he settled in 1966. He attracted attention for his innovative and thought-provoking sculptures that included Tar paintings, cardboard reliefs, and the iconic Tas de charbon (Pile of Coal), one of the first sculptures with variable dimensions.

Tomorrow, on March 3, Venet will unveil an 8-meter tall sculpture titled Disorder 9 Uneven Angles in New York’s Union Square. The sculpture will remain on view through June.

Bernar Venet, <i>217.5 ARCS X 13</i> in Vancouver, Canada <br>Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Bernar Venet, 217.5 ARCS X 13 in Vancouver, Canada
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Venet earned his first retrospective at the New York Cultural Center in 1971, and invitations to major art festivals soon followed. He participated at Documenta 6 in Kassel in 1977, and at the Paris, Venice, and São Paulo Biennales.

In 1979, he created the first of his signature Indeterminate Lines, and in 1994 he was invited to present his Indeterminate Lines sculpture at the Eiffel Tower in Paris. In 2011 he became the 4th contemporary artist to be offered a solo sow at the Château de Versailles, an honor that has developed into a major global milestone for artists.

Venet has participated in a staggering 250 exhibitions. To date, he is the most internationally exhibited French artist with sculpture exhibitions and works permanently installed in cities including Auckland, Austin, Beijing, Berlin, Cologne, Denver, Geneva, Nice, Paris, San Francisco, Seoul, Tokyo, and Toulouse.

His work is also represented in numerous prestigious public collections including the MoMA, the Guggenheim, and Centre Pompidou.

Bernar Venet Arc de 124,5° (1987) Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Bernar Venet Arc de 124,5° (1987)
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Venet has won numerous awards and honors including France’s Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur, and now adds the 2016 Lifetime Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture to the list.

Founded in 1991 the award recognizes sculptors who have made “exemplary contributions to the field of sculpture,” and have “devoted their careers to the development of a laudable body of work as well as to the advancement of the sculpture field as a whole.”

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