Born in 1934 in Lyon, Jean-Michel Sanejouand lives and works in the Anjou region. An emblematic figure of the art scene of the ‘60s, he has influenced a whole generation of artists by the radicalism of his proposals. After studying political sciences and law, the self-taught Jean-Michel Sanejouand creates, in 1962, his first assemblages of objects, known as Charges-Objets (1962-1967). Designated by critics as a worthy heir of Duchamp’s approach, the artist does not let himself be limited by this definition. In 1967, he produces his first in situ work, calling it Sculpture sur mesure (“tailor-made sculpture”). Parallel to his Organisations d’espaces (“organizations of space”) demonstrative of definite spaces, Sanejouand takes to painting, but using India ink, and realizes his Calligraphies d’humeur (“mood calligraphies”, 1968-1978).
In the late 1970s, he began his Espaces-Peintures (1978-1986), a series of paintings with flamboyant colors, devoting his time to a medium then so little in vogue. He abandons color for a while to produce his Peintures Noirs et Blanc (1986-1992) before returning in 1989 to sculpture or rather “non-sculpture” because, seemingly wishing to extend his Charges-Objets and pebble-stacks from the 1960s, Sanejouand does not really sculpt but rather assembles stones and then creates new forms. Discreetly revolutionizing sculpture as well as painting, the work of Jean-Michel Sanejouand continually circulates between these disciplines, driven by obsession and the need to experiment space.
His work is present in prestigious French public collections including the Musée national d’art moderne/Centre Pompidou, the Musée d’Art moderne de la Ville de Paris, the Musée d’Art Contemporain de Lyon and the Lille Métropole Musée d’art moderne, d’art contemporain et d’art brut. Many personal exhibitions have been devoted to his work since the 1960s, including: Rétrospective des Charges-Objets aux Espaces-Peintures, at the Palais des Beaux-Arts de Lyon (1986), the 1963-1995 retrospective at the Centre Pompidou (1995), Rétrospectivement… at the Frac Pays de la Loire, Carquefou (2012), Charges-Objets at MAMCO, Geneva and Un peu d’espace(s) at Art : Concept, Paris in 2015.