Pierre Passebon is a collector and the founder of Galerie du Passage located at 20 Gal Véro-Dodat in Paris. With independent auctioneer and curator Florent Barbarossa who organises Masculin / Masculin, an auction at Hotel Drouot since 2014, Passebon publishes Man to Man: an Obsession, a new volume celebrating the male nude through paintings, photography, sculpture, ceramics and other media.
Published by Flammarion, the perfectly-sized book features a selection of artworks reassessing notions of masculinity and normative views of the male body. All the pieces honour sexuality and desire and are from Passebon’s personal impressive collection. The pictures showcase the artworks in their natural settings and the book hereby brilliantly mixes individual pieces with beautiful interior shots. An interview with Passebon on his tastes, how he curated his collection and his favourite theme and literature opens the book.
“Brought together by a combination of curiosity and desire, these images illustrate a subject that’s been explored down the centuries: our eternal quest for heroes.” says the introduction to this remarkable title.
Cyril Tricaud’s Double Self-Portrait, mysterious back facing paintings featuring young men is published as a double page spread. They resonate with Christopher Thomson’s painting depicting a lone man in a natural landscape. The paintings also dialogue with drawings and photographs by Denis Dailleux, David Hockney, Arthur Tress, Pierre et Gilles drawings by Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld featuring his eternal love Jacques de Bascher.
Not only is Passebon a successful galerist, he’s also an artist as demonstrated by his erotic own pastel drawings. Other highlights include a stunning hyper realist oil on canvas by Jacques Sultana, a favourite of Passebon who has exhibited his works several times at the gallery. “Jacques Sultana was a loner who had devoted himself to hyper realist painting since the 1970s. I became his principal collector, and the teacher that he had formerly been rekindled my love of drawing, just as Bob Elia taught me the pleasure of working in pastel on Kraft paper. […] Jacques died suddenly. The painter was found at the foot of his easel, naked facing an unfinished nude. The memory of the end of The Oval Portrait by Edgar Allan Poe lightened my sadness.”
Man to Man: an Obsession published by Flammarion is a must have to discover an outstanding collection of artworks around the male body and gay desire.