press release

In 1964, André Robillard decided to "make something of his life": he set about assembling various objects taken from waste bins to come up with his first rifles. At the age of eighty-three, this creator of Art Brut continues to produce works in the vein of those that inspired Jean Dubuffet to include several specimens in his own collection. Combining salvaged materials and carved wood, for fifty years now Robillard has unflaggingly constructed rifles, as well as airplanes, sputniks, and animals. He also continues to produce many drawings in colored pencil or felt-tip pen with, as his subject matter, war, aerospace, the animal world and sports.

The first solo show by the Collection de l'Art Brut devoted to André Robillard's creations highlights his capacity for experimenting, for seeking out new approaches by varying as much his subjects as his supports. This vast retrospective, featuring 130 pieces exclusively from the Lausanne museum's holdings, together with a selection of photographs, archival documents and films, pays tribute to one of the last "historic" creators of Art Brut still alive today.

Art Brut has played a major role in the artistic recognition bestowed upon André Robillard's oeuvre. On the one hand, having first discovered Robillard's rifles thanks to Dr. Paul Renard, Jean Dubuffet was inspired to add several to his own collection. And on the other, Robillard's works went on display as part of the Lausanne museum's Permanent Collection right from its opening in 1976. A year later, the museum's first director, Michel Thévoz, sent Robillard a postal card depicting his 1964 rifle. This highly delighted the creator, inspiring him to go on working non-stop: he thus sought to "kill misery" and "change his life."

Exhibition Curator: Sarah Lombardi
Director of the Collection de l’Art Brut