Ma collection de proverbes

  • 2012
  • Annette Messager
  • 15 pieces of embroidered cotton
  • 35 x 28 cm

A collecting artist, Annette Messager has produced albums organized according to various themes — love life, meetings, domestic life — since the early 1970s, which evoke a private journal, a photo album or a recipe book, to create a subtle and poetic body of work. My Collection of Proverbs (Ma collection de proverbes) (2012) comprises misogynist sayings “awkwardly” embroidered by Messager on each of the fifteen pieces of white cotton; thus, revealing toxic points of view. 

© Adagp, Paris, 2020 © Primae / David Bordes © Adagp, Paris, 2020 © Primae / David Bordes © Adagp, Paris, 2020 © Primae / David Bordes


Annette Messager

Annette Messager belongs to a generation of artists who, since the 1970s, have been rewriting the language of art.

Without stating a specific position, Messager asserts her dual identity as a woman and an artist. She creates characters that cultivate ambiguity: the Collectionneuse, the Truqueuse, the Amoureuse and the Femme pratique, whose imaginary lives are opportunities to expose prejudice and express what is usually left unsaid. In the 1980s Messager began to incorporate fragments of the body through photography, fur and puppets, inserting them in mechanised worlds, focusing on the emotive and symbolic charge of works that reflect the theatre of life in derisory, grotesque or dramatic fashion. In 2005, Messager received the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale, where she represented France.

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