Nicolas Puyjalon’s work is best expressed through his use of performance art.
To begin with, the artist marks out a space using adhesive tape, then builds rickety structures made out of salvaged materials, a joyful and colourful chaos amid which he carries out actions, dramatic and grotesque quests doomed to failure and ridicule.
His body, which is the main tool in his work – in accordance with the medium’s tradition –, displays clumsiness, but also obstinacy and effort, before it finally drops from exhaustion.
A poetic mood tinged with humour and melancholy emanates from these actions, these undertakings that were never meant to be achievable – a mood that can also be found in the orchestrations that Nicolas Puyjalon creates using several techniques: writing, drawing, collage. Without conceding to depiction, the elements that make up these orchestrations – stand-alone pieces that adapt to various reactivation contexts – describe an imaginary and tangible space and allow one to map out movement based on the analogy between paper and space.

Translated by Lucy Pons
Biographical notes translated with the support of the Centre national des arts plastiques

Artistes, auteur·ices, philosophes, écrivain·es

Guy de Cointet, Jack Smith (Queer Theater), J.G. Ballard, Pina Bausch, René Daumal, Alfred Jarry, Richard Brautigan, Italo Calvino, Amanda lear, Juliette Armanet, Dalida, Tristan Rémy, Ugo Rondinone, John Giorno, Guillaume Désanges, Jean Genet, Albert Camus, Emmanuelle Bayamack- Tan, Guillaume Dustan, Gustave Flaubert, Nijinsky, Copi, Roisin Murphy

Ma famille artistique

Estelle Vernay, Emilie Franceschin, Zabo Chaland, Leila Peacock, Jerôme Souillot, Jason Kendig


Espace, chaise, carton, papier, bois, objets trouvés, gommettes, frites de piscine, maquillage, tulle, texte, encre, pastels


Corps, voix, scotch, sangle, corde, marteau, clou, livre, stylo


Aimer, désirer, rêver, dessiner, tenter, rater, tomber, rire, se jeter à l’eau, commettre, construire, traverser, avancer, gonfler, assembler, accrocher, nouer, attacher, coller, tirer, grimper, ramer, monter, escalader, gravir, lire, écrire, souffler, chanter, faire du pipeau, extraire, souligner


Rire, solitude, clown, humour, poésie, bêtise, pédé


Avec inquiétude mais aussi avec espoir, titre de l’exposition d’Angélique Aubrit et Ludovic Beillard à la Tôlerie, Clermont Ferrand, 2021
Il est des hommes qui se perdront toujours, livre de Rebecca Lighierri
Brûler le feu, chanson de Juliette Armanet
Histoire d’un amour, chanson de Dalida
Vocabulary of solitude, oeuvre d’Ugo Rondinone
Happy house, chanson de Siouxie and the banshees
Futur, ancien, fugitif, livre d’Olivier Cadiot
Je dors je travaille, catalogue de Valentine Schlegel