Laurence Maynier

Laurence Maynier © Fondation des Artistes

Laurence Maynier has spent a significant portion of her career at the Ministry of Culture, after completing her studies in literature and art. She initially joined the Delegation for Plastic Arts (DAP) in 1986. In 1996, she created the Department of Communication and External Relations at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris, which is responsible for cultural programming, exhibitions, communication, and sponsorship. In 2004, she was appointed Deputy Secretary General of the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres, focusing particularly on the institutions’ relations with visual artists. With the establishment of the public institution Sèvres - Cité de la céramique, in 2010 she became responsible for the cultural development activities of the institution. Since April 2016, she has been the General Director of the Fondation des Artistes, a recognized non-profit private foundation with a mission to support visual artists throughout their careers.

Exploring Paris during this new edition of Paris Gallery Weekend is a wonderful opportunity to meet some of the women who lead and embody art galleries, and through them, bring a new perspective on contemporary creation and support artists.

These women always express a particular sensitivity, a strong sense of determination, and they operate as key actors in the art ecosystem, whose commitment I would like to acknowledge. Several of them have chosen to highlight women artists during Paris Gallery Weekend 2024, which is commendable.

Among all these gallery owners, I suggest you follow a route through 16 galleries in 3 neighborhoods, starting in the 8th arrondissement, not far from the headquarters of the Fondation des Artistes.

Françoise Livinec, who recently showcased the fascinating work of Marie Vassilieff, a figure dear to the heart of the Fondation des Artistes, now reveals the unique work of Clarence Guéna, who revisits and appropriates reproductions of ultra-famous works from popular culture. Then, head to Hélène Bailly to rediscover the freedom of movement of the Fauves, before heading to the Galerie Esther Schipper to rediscover Daniel Steegmann Mangrané, whose fascination with biology and botany remains undiminished.

Next, I suggest making a detour to Saint-Germain-des-Prés to discover, at the Galerie MiniMasterpiece, Esther de Beaucé’s selection of unpublished jewelry in polished or rusty steel, and driftwood by Jean Grisoni. At Galerie La Forest-Divonne, the paintings of the American Jeff Kowatch, all imbued with his inner world, are placed in an unexpected dialogue with a 17th-century painting by Pier Francesco Cittadini. Nearby, at the Galerie Berthet-Aittouarès, come and discover the imposing sculptures of Daniel Pontoreau, who plays with the physical space of the gallery.

In the following, our path leads us to the Marais, where a lot of galleries are situated. At the Galerie Nathalie Obadia, you will appreciate the photographs and films by Laura Henno made in the Comoros, which reflect the complexity of its island territories as well as the local tensions that are present. Five portraits from Valérie Belin’s Lady Stardust series, embodying fashion icons or pop stars, are also on display. At the Galerie Anne-Sarah Bénichou, discover the recent photographs by Laurent Montaron taken in Greece and Turkey, to be found later at the Rencontres d’Arles.

At the Galerie Papillon, don’t miss Sabrina Vitali’s exhibition, which speaks of alchemy and metamorphosis, as well as the carte blanche offered to friends Colette Barbier and Claudine Papillon, who propose a collective display on the gallery’s upper floor. Galerie Anne-Laure Buffard presents Sel noir, a solo-show by Ilanit Illouz, an experimental photographer whom we know well at the Fondation des Artistes. Her particularly sensitive quest for traces of life in distant territories still touches me deeply. Anne Barrault presents Vimala Pons, this time through small videos from commercial image banks, whose vacuity is emphasized, allowing her to criticize our consumerist society. At the Galerie Jeanne-Bucher Jaeger, Véronique Jaeger has chosen to highlight the commitment of water and wind sculptor Susumu Shingu. Centered around the perpetual motions created by natural forces, a theme which largely animates his work, the exhibition presents drawings, paintings, sculptures, and models of his impressive projects in urban spaces. I suggest continuing the visit at Galerie Maria Lund, to discover the paintings of Didier Boussarie, who is inspired by a pond in Loiret, as he seeks to capture all its subtle nuances. After observing and reflecting on the creations of Levi Van Veluw at Galerie Les Filles du Calvaire, you can continue your visit in the gallery’s second location by questioning the mechanisms of seduction and of religious representation. The pictorial dialogue between Katinka Lampe & Janine van Oene is to be appreciated in their gallery on rue Chapon.

Above all, do not miss Galerie Chloé Salgado, which presents the latest creations of Camille Benarab-Lopez, who followed in the footsteps of Joyce Carol Oates’ novel We Were the Mulvaneys near New York, whose production the Fondation des Artistes had the pleasure of supporting. 

And when mentioning galleries owned and run by women, it is imperative to go to the Galerie Suzanne Tarasiève, whose team successfully perpetuates the spirit of the gallery and offers a set of paintings and photos, sensual and offbeat, by Jürgen Klauke.