Ronny Van De Velde
Jacques Charlier is an autodidact who studied art and the strategies of the art market. He systematically analyzes his collection of biographies, dictionaries and catalogues. As far back as the early sixties he started to construct ‘mise-en-scènes’ with discarded objects. In 1963 he amassed a collection of professional photographs made by the Technical Department of the Province of Liège, where he lives. His approach to photography is a response to Pop Art and the Nouveau Réalisme. In the eighties Charlier made remarkable satires about new trends in art with compositions of paintings and small statues. With unflagging energy the artist tries out every kind of artistic technique and expression possible, constructing an oeuvre that he refers to as ‘his activities’. Every year he creates ‘new’ art, but it is the art of a chameleon. With inexhaustible wit he adapts every object to his purpose. He has quite consciously chosen not to evolve a personal ‘style’, which enables him to keep shattering the aura which surrounds ‘art’.