Originally trained as a sculptor at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, Philippe Hiquily is now dedicated to sculptural furniture. He was a friend to some of the city’s famed artists including Jean Tinguely, Marcel Duchamp, and Georges Bataille, among others.
Hiquily graduated in 1953 and opened his own studio that same year in Paris. In 1959, he won the Critic’s Prize for sculpture at the Paris Biennial, and also exhibited work at New York gallery, The Contemporaries—where he met renowned American artists and dealers, including Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg. Over the course of his career, he also had ties to Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp, as well as the surrealist artists Max Ernst and Georges Bataille, among others.
Known for his works in metal, Hiquily spent the first decade of his career creating abstract, figurative sculptures primarily in iron, brass, and aluminum. In the 1960s, he expanded his focus and began designing furniture as well. During the 1980s, he created mobile sculptures propelled by electric motors.
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His work has been shown widely around the world. In the 1960s, Hiquily expanded his artistic practice to produce quixotic, cubist-inspired furniture. Using strange, semi-Gothic tapering forms, animal hides, fossils, and metal, Hiquily’s furniture, including his “Van Zuylen” table, combines the imaginative and whimsical with a more serious sense of the antique.
Never totally agree with the surrealists, or with the abstract, he operates an aesthetic vein whose enchantment will never dry.
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