Photo: Cha Gonzalez, Outsidr Art Fair Paris 2019
Saturday, October 19
9, rue de Drouot
As the focus of institutions, galleries and collectors turns more towards self-taught artists, works of Art Brut and Outsider Art are attracting high sums of money at auction and private sales around the world. A new level of player from many different fields are paying attention. But is this a problem for art that has long eluded the artistic canon and the categorization demanded by the art market? Our panel of experts from different areas of the field—a collector, a gallerist and an auction specialist—will outline their views of what “Outsider Art" really means, when it is at its best, and discuss the implications of its growing acceptance by the “in-crowd."
Bruno Decharme, Collector, founder of collection abcd
After studying philosophy and art history, Bruno Decharme became a movie director. In the middle of the 1970s, his encounter with Jean Dubuffet’s collection of art brut was a revelation. Since then, he’s been sharing his life between cinema and his collection of more than 5,000 works. In 1999, he made it available to the public and established the collection abcd, a research center whose projects include publications, seminars, documentaries and exhibitions.
Xavier Dominique, Auction specialist, Ader Auction House
Xavier Dominique joined the Ader Auction House in 2009 and his head of the 20th Century Arts department (modern, contemporary, and decorative art), and was named a partner in 2016. He received his auctioneer degree in 2012 and holds two master’s degrees in law and taxation of the art market, and art history.
Jean-Pierre Ritsch-Fisch, gallerist, Galerie J.P. Ritsch-Fisch
After establishing his career as a collector at the beginning of the 1970s with the Narrative Figuration movement, JP Ritsch-Fisch opened a gallery specializing in art brut and Outsider Art in 1966. In 1989, he discovered the works of Michel Nedjar featured in the Daniel Corder donation at the Musée national d’art moderne, and decided to meet him and to start collecting art brut. His was the very first French gallery entirely dedicated to art brut, and JP Ritsch-Fisch was rewarded as a pioneer collector and dealer of art brut, and presented with the title of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.
Melanie Gerlis: Before entering the art world, Melanie Gerlis worked for ten years at Finsbury, a strategic communications and investor relations firm, advising investment banks, hedge funds and other financial services clients. She became the weekly art market columnist for the Financial Times in 2016 and also contributes regular articles for the paper. She was previously Art Market Editor for The Art Newspaper, reporting on auctions, art fairs and market news globally since 2007. Melanie has a BA in English Literature from Cambridge University and an MA in Art Business from Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London. She is a trustee of The Art Academy and Art360 and a member of the governing body for Sotheby’s Institute of Art. Her book, Art as an Investment? A Survey of Comparative Assets, was published by Lund Humphries in 2014.