Paris Update Art Notes
NIKI DE SAINT PHALLE’S GANG
The kid-friendly Musée en Herbe.
Most Paris art museums have activities and/or spaces for children, but the Musée en Herbe (21, rue Hérold, 75001 Paris; tel.: 01 40 67 97 66) is the only one entirely devoted to them. This little museum is just as interesting for adults, however. The current show, “La Bande à Niki: Les Nouveaux Réalistes,” provides a great introduction to this French artistic movement for both young and old. It all started in 1960, when critic Pierre Restany and 13 young artists – Arman, César, Christo, Gérard Deschamps, François Dufrêne, Raymond Hains, Yves Klein, Martial Raysse, Mimmo Rotella, Niki de Saint Phalle, Daniel Spoerri, Jean Tinguely and Jacques Villeglé – joined together and swore off the use of traditional art materials like canvases and brushes, instead using found objects and innovative techniques – De Saint Phalle, for example, was in the habit of exploding pots of paint by shooting at them with a rifle. She and Tinguely created the moving, water-spewing sculptures for the Stravinsky Fountain next to the Centre Pompidou, and she later became famous for her “goddesses.” These are artists with a playful approach that will be especially appealing to children. Each one’s method is explained clearly (in French) and illustrated by one of his or her works. Through January 5, 2015. Heidi EllisonFavorite