Jacques Kaufmann, architectures céramiques Ceramic Architecture
Edited by Anne-Claire Schumacher
Bricks, one of the earliest materials associated with both housing and the body, are the subject and object of this publication. However, the book also explores the role of Jacques Kaufmann in the world of international contemporary ceramics and his impact in architectural ceramics since he first became interested in the field several years ago. In terms of human agency, bricks are the basic unit through which the artist introduces his designs in the landscape. Kaufmann uses this simple, yet tough, material to build up an imaginative world that is not linked solely to the bricks as such, but also to the symbolic charge they possess (the concept of transparency, physical and metaphorical walls, and their associated imaginative world).
This book is intended to accompany the Jacques Kaufmann exhibition that will be held at the Ariana Museum (Geneva), an event that will extend outside the museum. Indeed, an important part of the exhibition will be installed in the park: one of the walls “will enter” the museum and invite the visitor down to the basement display area.
A total of ten works will be exhibited and Kaufmann himself presents each in the book. The introduction is edited by Anne-Claire Schumacher, who discusses Kaufmann’s development and his place in the history of ceramic art and in contemporary art as a whole. This is followed by a contribution by Luca Pattaroni, who views the topic from a socio-political perspective. The five main works set in the park of the Ariana Museum and the continuation into the museum’s basement are described and commented by the artist.
Jacques Kaufmann (1954) opened his current studio in France, just over the border from Geneva, in 1988. He has taught at the Ecole d’arts appliqués of Vevey since 1995 and was appointed head of the ceramics department in 1996. His work in China since 1999 has enabled him to contribute to exhibition exchanges between Europe and China. In 2008, Kaufmann joined a group at Hepia, the University for Engineering, Architecture, and Landscape Architecture in Geneva, to conduct research on “green” walls on a city-wide scale. He is the current president of the International Academy of Ceramics.
Anne-Claire Schumacher is a curator at the Musée Ariana in Geneva and the author of several articles and publications associated with the museum, including another book published by 5 Continents Editions, La Manufacture de porcelaine de Langenthal, entre design industriel et vaisselle du dimanche, Milan, 2012.
Luca Pattaroni graduated in sociology and now works at the Laboratoire de Sociologie Urbaine (EPFL) and is a member of the Groupe de Sociologie Politique et Morale at Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales (GSPM/EHESS). He has been a visiting scholar at Columbia University (New York) and guest lecturer at the Federal University of Fluminense (Brazil) in 2011. His research and publications focus on urban and cultural policy, housing, social movements, the development of new ways of life, as well as, more broadly, typical issues in contemporary cities. He specializes in mixed methods as well as political and sociological theory and attempts to provide a nuanced analysis of different ways of life co-existing in a pluralist context, while investigating the political and moral issues inherent to establishing a shared social life.