In a magnificent restored Provençal villa, under the glaring sun of the French Riviera, Edouard Carmignac’s precious contemporary art collection is superbly displayed in the form of “Sea of desire”, an exhibition running until the 4th November.
The visitor is invited to dive in and enjoy the spectacle barefoot, feeling the ground right under the soles of their feet. This allows an unexpected feeling of profound connection with the place and with the tormented beauty of the artworks exhibited.
Roy Lichtenstein’s “Beach scene with Starfish” welcomes the visitor, whose gaze is then attracted by two Andy Warhol pieces: the portraits of Mao Tse Tung and Lenin. Many more masterpieces are then to be discovered step by step.
The exhibition deliberately presents what could be found in the “sea of desire” that is human nature: not only the incandescent experiences of love, eros and beauty, represented by Botticelli’s Virgin Mary and Venus – sacred and profane love, but also desperation, tragedy and revolution.
This voyage continues in the garden of the villa where, in the middle of the grapevines and olive tree groves, among other remarkable artworks, the whimsical “Path of Emotions” by Jeppe Hein, a maze constituted by mirrored posts and rushes, leaves the visitor astounded, thanks to indescribable disturbing reflections.
This outstanding exhibition is surely a must, a rendezvous for any art lover, but it is also a space-time for anybody in need of an occasion to fathom their own “sea of desire”.
“Sea of desire” – Carmignac Foundation, Porquerolles isle, Hyères, running until 4th November. Entry ticket 15 euros.