This exhibition, initiated by Senator Pierre Laurent and curated by Yolande Rasle and Renaud Faroux, groups an original selection of works. It marks the centenary of the French Communist Party (PCF) and draws connections between art and political engagement.
Since its creation in December 1920, the French Communist Party has had a major influence on intellectuals, especially artists. If some painters are known for their involvement, such as Picasso, Léger, Fougeron, Taslitzky, Pignon, Mireille Miailhe or Kijno, others, including Giacometti, Herbin and Masson also cultivated relations with the PCF to varying degrees. It is this rich history that the exhibition recounts, drawing on the collections of the PCF and of the Fédération de Paris. This selection of works donated by the artists has been enriched by others lent by museums, galleries and private collectors.
Presented at the headquarters of the PCF, an emblematic space designed by Oscar Niemeyer, this centenary exhibition recounts the often tragic, sometimes hopeful climate of a tumultuous century and reminds us that culture and art are at the heart of social struggles. Divided into major sectors – Pioneers of Modern Art, Social Realism, Abstraction(s), New Figurations and Photography – the exhibition scenography proposes a journey through the history of art by recontextualising the works presented in the artistic movements of the 20th century to the present day.