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Pol BURY

(1922 - 2005)


Pol Bury was trained at the École des Beaux-Arts de Mons (Belgium), in which he enrolled in 1938. He was painter, draughtsman, sculptor, writer and also made fountains. We can include his first years of work within Belgian Surrealism (Walloon), a movement that was gathered around the emblematic figure of Achille Chavée, founder of the Rupture group (1938). Pol Bury also took part in its activities as painter, following the political path of his forebears. He was Regent of Cinématoglyphe in the College de Pataphysique. From the experience of Surrealism, Bury was to retain an unthinkable character, a structure on the boundaries of the absurd, images from the dream of the unconscious. He was to apply this unique character to his constructions and kinetic sculptures on which he worked almost exclusively from 1953. These are works in which Bury celebrated an unconscious equilibrium, combining simple forms and complex structures like a riddle, only for the sake of setting the laws of gravitation at defiance. Recalling the meeting of sphere and cube, Pol Bury announced: “They are holding each other by the thread, defying gravitation, leaving an impression of lightness,” * which we can also see in his lithographs. After World War II Pol Bury took part as a painter in the adventure of the CoBrA croup and at one time dabbled with geometrical abstraction, that is with forms that he was later to arrange in space out of copper and stainless steel with their reflective properties. During the 1950s he did a series of canvases in relief (Plans mobiles, Girouettes, Multiplans); he then moved over to sculptures and volumetric constructions. “One of my basic preoccupations was to poke fun at the square”, Pol Bury said to André Balthazar, a friend of his, Belgian publisher and poet. This confession sums up the modesty with which Bury determined to breathe life and a sense of humour into objects and metal.

 

Fontaine
Fontaine, 1978

Acier inoxydable
Don de l'artiste, 1978
Collection Fondation Maeght