The start of the 1960s marked the end of an era: the last Horse Show took place in 1957, and the Interior Design Exhibition and Motor shows both moved in 1960 and 1961, respectively. A new era was dawning.
The exhibition was born from an idea of President Georges Pompidou, a lover of modern art. Its creation was controversial: an initial list of around 300 artists from all sorts of disciplines was drawn up, but most refused the invitation due to fears of political fallout – May 1968 was still in many people's minds. The final catalogue featured 75 artists and the Malassis collective. On 17 May 1972, 31 of these artists signed a condemnation of the police's heavy-handed intervention. Five of the artists and the Malassis group took their work down out of solidarity. One of them turned their canvas the wrong way round, another covered theirs in strong-smelling cheese.
We would like to thank all the people who have contributed to the construction of this journey through the Grand Palais and those who have given us valuable time and information as well as permission to reproduce their documentation.