Since 1986, Piffaretti has dedicated himself to the process of repetition, yielding vibrant, twin-like canvases divided by a central, painted stroke. Beginning with the vertical demarcation of the left and right side of the working field, he then paints one side of the canvas and copies the composition to the other. When resolved, the distinction between the original and the copy fades away, and subtle nuances reveal themselves in brushstroke shifts and distinct drips. In rare variations, he chooses to leave one side of the canvas vacant, playfully subverting his modus operandi.
Bernard Piffaretti was born in Saint-Etienne, France. He lives and works in Paris. After training as an artist at the École des Beaux-Arts, Saint-Etienne, from 1974 until 1979, he developed a technique that underlies the creation of every one of his canvasses, the so-called “duplication method”. A new monograph on Piffaretti’s work, with texts by Barry Schwabsky, Marie Muracciole and Jens Asthoff, was published in 2016 by the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art (Geneva, Switzerland).
Bernard Piffaretti’s work was the subject of a recent solo exhibition at FRAC Franche-Comté (Besançon, France) and a two-person exhibition with Martin Barré at Musée des Beaux Arts de Nantes (Nantes, France). Piffaretti’s work has been the subject of solo museum exhibitions at the Frac Haute-Normandie (2010, Rouen, France); Musée d’ Art Moderne (2009, Saint-Etienne, France); Musée Matisse (2008. Le Cateau- Cambrésis, France); Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art/MAMCO (2007, Geneva, Switzerland); Beaumont Public Gallery (2006, Luxembourg, Germany); Sara Hilden Art Museum (2001, Tampere, Switzerland); Cartier Foundation for Contemporary Art (2000, Paris, France); and Villa Arson (1991, Nice, France). Piffaretti has been featured in museum group exhibitions at the Centre Georges Pompidou (Paris, France); Hong Kong Museum; CAPC Museum of Contemporary Art (Bordeaux, France); Joan Miro Foundation (Barcelona, Spain); National Gallery of the Grand Palais (Paris, France); and Switzerland Museum of Fine Arts (Bern, Switzerland).