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Mézières at the Galerie 9e art and Peter Buggenhout at the Galerie Laurent Godin

  • Mezieres
    Gallery 9e art

The block of carbonite that holds Han Solo prisoner in Empire strikes back ? It’s him. The flying taxis of the Fifth element ? Him again. The city floating in the space of Dark City ? Always him. By creating, in 1967, the character of the space-time agent Valérian, with his friend screenwriter Pierre Christin, Jean-Claude Mézières, 83 years old today, not only revolutionized science fiction comics, but also codified the genre of space opera, of which he remains undoubtedly one of the greatest inspirers. By bringing together about sixty plates and illustrations from the series Valérian and Laureline, Gallery 9e art makes it possible to take the measure of this formal inventiveness. Vessels, creatures, cities, everything is astonishingly rich. Of course, the drawing of Jean-Claude Mézières no longer has the same accuracy in the last volumes. But admire the Chinese ink plates of masterpieces like The Empire of a Thousand Planets (Dargaud, 1971) or On the rigged lands (Dargaud, 1977) is a Proustian pleasure that should not be deprived of. A visit to the exhibition can be usefully supplemented by reading The Art of Mézières (Dargaud, 240 pages, 39 euros), an artbook devoted to the French designer which has just been published. Cedric Pietralunga

Read also “If ‘Valérian’ had been adapted for the United States, we would have been betrayed”

“The Art of Mézières”. Gallery 9e art, 4, rue Crétet, Paris 9e. Until October 23. From Wednesday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., then from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

  • Peter Buggenhout
    Laurent Godin Gallery

Mézières at the Galerie 9e art and Peter Buggenhout at the Galerie Laurent Godin

Baudruches, eiderdowns, fragments of shelves, abandoned boxes, animal stomachs… All the debris that Peter Buggenhout grabs hold of them seem to have turned to dust. And yet a strange life emanates from the sculptures of the Flemish artist. Secret stories of which we can see traces, “Complex truths”, as he suggests. Voluntarily chosen for their “Abjection”, these elements federate in magma, “Hardly knowing where they come from and mistakenly thinking that they know where they are going, like us”, he said. Its Gorgons crystallize for millennia, Romanesque stones bewitched with horsehair and blood. As for the final piece, the most monumental, it attracts like a magnet this black dust which surrounds the most famous works of Buggenhout, and imposes in the constrained space its spectral presence. Emmanuelle Lequeux

“Not lost”. Laurent Godin Gallery, 36 bis, rue Eugène-Oudiné, Paris 13e. Until November 27. Tuesday to Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

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