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René Bonargent
  • Artist (1933)

The engraver, draughtsman and painter René Bonargent was born in 1933 in Déols and died in 2009.  Trained as a housepainter, he took evening courses at the School of Fine Arts in Châteauroux, as well as private classes until 1954 when he finished all his apprenticeship.   An exhibition of contemporary engraving, which he visited in 1964, encouraged him to learn this technique; his mastery of it would lead to many exhibitions, and the award of the Prix de la Gravure Originale in 1973.  He produced more and more series in the 1990s:  Le divin désordre, Bleu, Jardin, ombres et lumières and Labyrinthe noir.  In 1980, Bonargent chose the book as a place of reflection and encounter between writing and engraving.  He published the collection Indifférences which ran to some 60 volumes (it disappeared in 2000).  His graphic language was hallmarked by the systematic and more or less dense interception of one and the same straight line offering so many openings and coverings of the surface.  In the 1980s, his work became more radical, and, on sheets of plyboard, he rigorously and doggedly engraved regularly spaced lines, using a process akin to writing.

Nadine Labedade