QUOTE under cataloguing
Yves Klein was an artist creator of a myth. Becoming Yves the Monochrome, he adopts the blue to which he gives his name - the IKB, International Klein Blue -, projects art into the invisible, transforms his models into "living brushes". In addition to an exceptional work, he leaves behind clairvoyant writings that make him one of the most innovative artists of his time, whose boldness never ceases to amaze.
In February 1962, Yves Klein decided to create three portraits-reliefs, real-size moldings of his new realist friends: Arman, Martial Raysse and Claude Pascal. Like for his Anthropométries, he decided to use the naked body stripped from all its attributes, and create high reliefs, which dimensions, front presentation and asymmetrical leg cuts are reminiscent of the vestiges of classic Roman-Greek statuary.
Covered with IKB pigments and mounted on a majestic panel painted with gold leaves, this portrait-relief of poet Claude Pascal, with who Yves Klein collaborated several times in the course of his career, was made only a couple of months before the tragic death of the artist. His plan was to complete the series with a fourth and last portrait-relief representing himself in the same posture, but this time covered with gold pigments mounted on a ultramarine panel.
As he alternated between gold and IKB, two colors inseparable from his practice and emblematic of his work, Klein once again played around codes. The human figure seems almost detached from its vertical support and rises up like another Saut dans le Vide. Because of the physicality of his posture, the male figure seems particularly present and absent at the same time. Captured in bronze, he is covered with monochromatic soft and thin Klein blue particles like a sepulchral ointment. With this portrait-relief of Blaise Pascal, Yves Klein not only questions pictorial and sculptural media but also pushes the boundaries of art by giving life to a revolutionary sensitive, spiritual and metaphysical work that inspired generations to come.
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