- Robert Filliou
"What are you doing? What are you thinking? Do something else, think something else!"
Robert Filliou, who studied economics, strove for a radical opening up of the concepts of art, with any means, any form, and any working method equally able to produce art. In January 1962, the globetrotter artist founded his own gallery in the form of a cap. This Galerie Légitime draws on Marcel Duchamp’s idea of a miniature museum in a suitcase. This enabled Filliou to open his exhibition for anyone at any time and at any place: in the streets, in bistros, in shops, or in museums. His cap later grew to the size of a bowler hat, and then a top hat containing works by artist friends, and was sold in Perspex versions. In 1965 he moved the Galerie Legitime to La Cédille qui sourit, the laughing Cédille, the store he founded together with George Brecht. This was intended as both a point of sale and a venue for creative invention. René Block remembers one of Filliou’s guiding principles, a statement on a stamp that says: well made, badly made, not made. This is Filliou’s idea of balance, which was inspired by East Asian philosophy. This means that there are no hierarchies of value. Whether something is well made, badly made, or not made, makes no difference. All things are equal as works of art.