Jean-Michel Alberola

Acrylic and gouache

H.74 x W.60,5 cm

H.89,5 x W.76 cm (with frame)


1953 Born in Saida, Algeria. 1981 Jean-Michel Alberola participates, with other artists such as Robert Combas and Jean-Charles Blais, in the exhibition Finir en beauté (Finish in beauty)which serves as a manifesto of free figuration.

Since 1982, he is represented by the Daniel Templon Gallery in Paris.

1985 La Peinture (The Paint), l’Histoire et la Géographie (History and Geography) exhibition at the Centre Georges Pompidou (Contemporary Galleries, MNAM), Paris.

Since 1991, Jean-Michel Alberola teaches at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

1994 L’Effondrement des Enseignes Lumineuses (The Collapse of Illuminated Signs), exhibition at the Fondation Cartier pour l'Art Contemporain, Paris.

1995 Les événements, les situations, les sentiments (Events, situations, feelings), exhibition at the Musée d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. His works are now regularly exhibited in France (Palais de Tokyo, Paris, Musée d'Art Moderne de Saint-Etienne, FRAC Picardie...) and abroad. He participates in a group exhibition at the Palais de Tokyo starting in February 2016.

Libération 2016

Géorgie l'oukase

By Jean-Michel Alberola (1953, France)

"The expression "Georgie l'oukase" immediately referred me back to Georges Lucas, the director of Star Wars, , and Georg Lukács, philosopher and sociologist of Hungarian literature. This thinker of alienation is the author of one of the most beautiful books on Karl Marx, Le Jeune Marx (The Young Karl Marx). I have added at the top of the front page the names of these quasi-homonyms, echoing the title. It is less a play on words than a word slip, which catalyzes three different points of view on power: popular, political, philosophical. I play on the apparent gap between very distant universes, but it's not about humor... I'm always first-degree. Star Wars is something very serious! Referring to it allows us to address a collective and popular imagination. It is also a way of demystifying politics. I make no distinction between "popular" culture and the "learned" culture embodied by Georg Lukács. Between the low and the high. Great science fiction or fantasy books, such as Stand on Zanzibar by John Brunner, are political books ; The Lord of the Ringsby J.R.R. Tolkien, is a reflection on Nazism; Star Wars questions power. My work is about wonder: I make connections between different milieus and temporalities. Nothing is isolated. What happens here has consequences there. The collapse of the Soviet bloc created territorial problems with deep economic and political roots, of which the 2008 attack on South Ossetia by the Georgian army and the Russian counteroffensive are one of the resurgences. The common denominator between "Georgia the Ukase", Georges Lucas, and Georg Lukács is power. The link seemed obvious to me as soon as I saw this headline. As I expressed it previously in one of my neon works, I consider that "the question of power is the only answer.". It is the foundation of all human relations, whether in the private, entrepreneurial or public sphere. This revisited front page is for me a real political play. It sums up what I've been thinking for 30 years."