Death of Ben: the avant-garde artist died on June 5, 2024 at the age of 88

Published by Cécile de Sortiraparis · Published on June 5th, 2024 at 01:08 p.m.
Known for his installations and humorous phrases, Ben was one of the great names of contemporary art in France. He died on June 5, 2024, at the age of 88.

Thecontemporary art world is in mourning: artist Ben - real name Benjamin Vautier - passed away on June 5, 2024, at the age of 88. Ben was known for his performances and installations, but above all for his humorous and philosophical writings, which he applied to all available media.

According to information relayed by France Info, the artist was found at his home in Nice, and died of a "gunshot wound " to the head, according to Claire Ribero, chief of staff to the Nice public prosecutor. Initial hypotheses point to suicide, following the death of Benjamin Vautier's wife on Tuesday June 4, 2024. However, the police investigation is continuing.

Born on July 18, 1935 in Naples (Italy), Benjamin Vautier is of Franco-Swiss origin. This multicultural background has marked him all his life, in the major stages of his life, through his travels and in his works. From early childhood, Ben and his family traveled from country to country, fleeing the Second World War. Later, Ben traveled to share his work around the world.

Musée en Oeuvre(s) au Centre Pompidou - Le Magasin de BenMusée en Oeuvre(s) au Centre Pompidou - Le Magasin de BenMusée en Oeuvre(s) au Centre Pompidou - Le Magasin de BenMusée en Oeuvre(s) au Centre Pompidou - Le Magasin de Ben

Considered avant-garde and post-modern, Ben soon joined the Fluxus artistic movement: through humor and derision, the artist questioned art, its role and its importance... A movement that gave rise to "anti-art", confirming Ben's position as a provocative, mischievous artist.

A jack-of-all-trades, Ben is equally at home in video, photography, painting, sculpture, performance art and mail art. In his own words: in art, everything is new, everything is possible. Throughout his career, he has strived to create something new.

Le MAC-VAL, le musée d'art contemporain du Val-de-Marne et ses collections à portée de Navigo - BenLe MAC-VAL, le musée d'art contemporain du Val-de-Marne et ses collections à portée de Navigo - BenLe MAC-VAL, le musée d'art contemporain du Val-de-Marne et ses collections à portée de Navigo - BenLe MAC-VAL, le musée d'art contemporain du Val-de-Marne et ses collections à portée de Navigo - Ben

Very popular, Ben has been at the center of numerous exhibitions in France and around the world. He has set up his own museum in Blois (Loir-et-Cher), focusing on doubt and Fluxus. He has also been made an Officier des Arts et des Lettres.

To admire Ben's work in Paris, and appreciate the artist's creativity, head for the Centre Pompidou, which owns and exhibits a dozen of his works. Some of his works are also on show at the MAC/VAL and the Musée d'Art Moderne de Paris.

Practical information

Dates and Opening Time
On June 5th, 2024

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