27.09.2022 — 22.01.2023

Paris et nulle part ailleurs

Maria Helena Vieira da Silva

Musée de l'histoire de l'immigration, Paris

The exhibition Paris et nulle part ailleurs immerses the public in the effervescent post-war years that, from 1945 to 1972, saw the emergence of new artistic visions, whether in the field of abstraction, figuration or kinetic art.

In the first half of the 20th century, Paris was the world capital of the arts, the home of the avant-garde to which artists and intellectuals from all over the world flocked. After the Second World War, despite the increasing attractiveness of New York, it was still in Paris, and for many, nowhere else, that one had to go to train, create, exhibit, confront one’s work with that of others, and write art history.

Of the 15,000 artists active in Paris at that time, 60 to 65% of them were foreigners. Whether they spent only a few months, a few years, left and came back, or settled permanently, for what reasons did these artists come? How have their works been marked by this change of universe, how do they express it? Are their migratory paths similar to those of their compatriots? Paris et nulle part ailleurs looks at 24 artists from various backgrounds (Europe, Africa, Latin America, the United States, Asia) who have come to Paris and whose work allows us to grasp the challenges of migration.

Organized into four themes: exile, mixing one’s culture of origin and that of the host country, reacting to the strangeness of the world one discovers, and constructing a universal language without borders, the exhibition evokes the motivations for departure, installation, sociability, and a sometimes difficult daily life in a cosmopolitan city that has become their new home.

The exhibition brings together a hundred works from private and public collections – drawings, sculptures, paintings, collages – by Maria Helena Vieira da Silva (Portugal), Shafic Abboud (Lebanon), Eduardo Arroyo (Spain), André Cadere (Romania), Ahmed Cherkaoui (Morocco), Carlos Cruz-Diez (Venezuela), Dado (Montenegro), Erró (Iceland), Tetsumi Kudo (Japan), Wifredo Lam (Cuba), Julio Le Parc (Argentina), Milvia Maglione (Italy), Roberto Matta (Chile), Joan Mitchell (United States), Vera Molnar (Hungary), Iba N’Diaye (Senegal), Alicia Penalba (Argentina), Judit Reigl (Hungary), Antonio Seguí (Argentina), Jesús Rafael Soto (Venezuela), Daniel Spoerri (Romania), Hervé Télémaque (Haiti), Victor Vasarely (Hungary), Zao Wou-Ki (China)

The curator of the exhibition is Jean-Paul Ameline, who was a curator at the Musée National d’Art Moderne Centre Pompidou in Paris. He was subsequently appointed General Curator of Heritage in 2003 and head of the Modern Collections Department until 2013. He has curated numerous exhibitions including Face à l’Histoire. L’artiste moderne devant l’événement historique, 1933-1991 (1996), and Paris du Monde entier (l’artiste étranger à Paris 1900-2005) for the National Art Center in Tokyo in 2007.

Musée de l'histoire de l'immigration

Palais de la Porte Dorée
293, avenue Daumesnil
75012 Paris


Opening hours

From September 27, 2022 to January 22, 2023

From Tuesday to Friday, from 10 am to 5:30 pm
Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 7 pm

Maria Helena Vieira da Silva, Normandie, 1949
Gouache on canvas
15,8 × 18,5 in
Photograph by Jean-Louis Losi
Maria Helena Vieira da Silva, Lisbonne (Recto), 1940
Gouache on cardboard
16,5 × 19,3 in
Photograph by Jean-Louis Losi