François Morellet


François Morellet, a pioneering French artist, was born on April 30, 1926, in Cholet, France. Throughout his life, he challenged traditional artistic conventions and became a leading figure in the fields of geometric abstraction and concrete art.

Morellet’s artistic journey began in the 1950s when he co-founded the “Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel” (GRAV) with other like-minded artists. This avant-garde collective sought to explore new approaches to art, emphasizing the use of geometric forms, optical effects, and mathematical principles. Their work laid the foundation for the Op Art movement, which focused on creating visual illusions and engaging the viewer’s perception. One of his most significant contributions to the art world was his exploration of randomness and chance in the creative process. He often used random systems and mathematical algorithms to determine the placement and arrangement of lines, shapes, and colors in his works. This approach allowed him to relinquish control over the final composition, embracing the element of unpredictability and creating a dynamic tension between order and chaos. His artistic repertoire encompassed a wide range of media, including painting, sculpture, installation, and neon lights. His neon works, in particular, added a new dimension to his geometric explorations, as he integrated light and space into his compositions. His mastery of geometry and optical effects earned him international acclaim, and he exhibited his works in major galleries and museums around the world. In the 1970s and 1980s, his oeuvre expanded to include large-scale public art installations. His monumental works adorned public spaces, engaging with architecture and inviting viewers to interact with the environment in new and unexpected ways. Morellet’s art was characterized by its wit, playfulness, and intellectual rigor. He often used humor and irony to challenge established artistic norms and question the boundaries of art. His works were marked by a sense of spontaneity and simplicity, yet they also contained a profound depth of meaning and conceptual complexity.

His work can be found in the permanent exhibitions of the Tate Britain, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, Los Angeles Museum of Art, Seoul Museum of Art, Tel Aviv Museum, the Kunsthaus Zurich, and the Centre Pompidou, among others. François Morellet passed away on May 10, 2016, leaving behind a remarkable artistic legacy that continues to captivate and inspire art enthusiasts worldwide.

Available and selected Artworks
Exhibitions at QG