Victor Vasarely, known as the “father of optical art,” is featured in at the Centre Pompidou—it’s the first major retrospective dedicated to his work by a French institution. The exhibition, on view through May, honors the Hungarian-born artist—naturalized in France in 1961—across three hundred works, objects and documents in a chronological and thematic layout. Vasarely’s work was influenced by early Bauhaus and the culture of advertising, but the optical illusions owe above all to scientific precision, which he further developed in the 1960s and 1970s. (Immersive installations are on view at the Vasarely Foundation in Aix-en-Provence.) The artist also created the emblematic diamond for the company Renault and his work was used for David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” cover. The timelessness of Vasarely’s work has influenced a generation of artists and artistic directors, including many who came to discover the exhibition preview last night: artists Julio Le Parc and Laurent Grasso, artistic director Yorgo Tloupas, gallerist Emmanuel Perrotin, plus figures like Ségolène Royal and the French Minister of Culture, Franck Riester.

Photos: Jean Picon
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