Some weekend reading: I recently discovered this hard to find and out-of-print exhibition catalog available for free online. You can browse it below, or find it here.
Published in 1997, it documents 180 objects gathered over forty years by the well-known French artist/collector. The book includes a nice introduction by Jacques Kerchache, as well as interesting interviews of the man by both Alain Nicolas and Monique Barbier-Mueller. As the collection was mostly dispersed after the artist’s death, you’ll find many objects that have been circulating on the art market in the catalog; I sold the Kwele mask at Christie’s two years ago for example. Especially the group of Gabonese objects truly stands out within this collection; the quantity and quality of figures the artist was able to bring together is quite impressive, and, which collector hasn’t yet dreamt of building his own wall of Kota figures as illustrated below. As in his art, Arman was the ultimate accumulator. From Derain, Vlaminck, Epstein, Picasso and up to Baselitz, Arman was without doubt the artist who accorded the most of his time, effort and energy to his collection of African art, and the result is here for us to be admired.
Let me know what your favourite object is ?!