From 05 March to 31 December 2022
The Musée International d'Art Naïf Anatole Jakovsky, forty years of a journey dedicated to the celebration of forty years of the creation of the museum, original documents, intimate photographs, moving and sensitive works for the most part never exhibited.
But where, if not in Nice, at the edge of the Bay of Angels, so aptly named, will the naïve, vilified, betrayed and misunderstood for so long find, at last, the best, the only haven of grace that befits them, in order to repeat there, all in chorus, in the centuries to come, these verses of Apollinaire, which smell good of mimosa, of pineapple and of the "Mimosa".
the best, the only haven of grace that befits them, in order to repeat there, all in chorus, in the centuries to come, these verses of Apollinaire, which smell good of mimosa, rosemary and the sea:
A tiny bird
On the shoulder of an angel
He sings the praise
Of the gentle Rousseau!
With these words, written in the conclusion of "Introduce to the Naive Territory", written for the catalogue raisonné of the collections, Anatole Jakovsky acknowledges that the Musée International d'Art Naïf Anatole Jakovsky, which has just been created by his donation of a set of 1000 works and archives, will constitute a place for the defence and promotion of Naive Art.
It therefore seemed natural that on the occasion of the fortieth anniversary of its creation, the Museum, inaugurated on 5 March 1982, should question what it has been and put its evolution into perspective in a reflective way before taking a new step from 2023 onwards, which, starting from Naïve Art and its most zealous and stubborn defender, will give pride of place to Art Brut and Singulier.
The aim is to examine the circumstances surrounding the birth of the museum and the figure of the art critic and writer Anatole Jakovsky, nicknamed the "Pope of the Naïves", by looking at the initial collection and its successive additions, as well as the various permanent and temporary exhibitions that have marked the museum's history and the scientific discourses and axes that have structured them.
The exhibition is therefore structured around two main themes.
The first, which covers the period from 1942 to 1983, is devoted to the creation of the museum and follows the stages from the conception of the collection by Anatole Jakovsky to the signing of the donation and the choice of the building housing the museum - the Château Sainte-Hélène - up to its inauguration on 5 March 1982, and the first three temporary exhibitions organised there during Anatole Jakovsky's lifetime and under his impetus.
This axis ends in 1983 with his death on 24 September.
Visitors will thus be able to rediscover this first period and pay tribute to the museum's creator through documents and works, some of which have never been exhibited before, in a renewed perspective, in addition to previously unpublished documents devoted to Château Sainte-Hélène.
The second axis focuses on the evolution of the museum between 1984 and 2021, with a view to evoking, by crossing them, on the one hand, the scientific axes followed by the Museum and the various exhibitions that have been held, and, on the other hand, the successive enrichment (by donation, bequest, purchase, deposit) of the initial collection, both in terms of works and documentation.
This development allows the museum's long history to be seen and offers the visitor a synthesis of the museum's structuring discourses, past, present and future.