James Coignard Biography
James COIGNARD [French, 1925-2008] Born in central France in 1925, Coignard studied first at the École des Arts Decoratifs in Nice, then as an apprentice to the painter Marchand des Raux. Coignard was unique among printmakers of the 20th century in that he achieved a very deep, heavy texture with the carborundum medium developed by Henri Goetz in the 1960s (Goetz also taught this medium to Miro, Papart, and Clave.). Coignard, however, was compulsive in his experimenting with carborundum, often using hand-made papers a quarter-inch think that took months to produce. Vibrant primary colors — dramatic swashes of blue, red, yellow, green and black — are the signature accents of his abstract compositions, and their power is amplified by his technical virtuosity. His printmaking sessions required intense periods, often demanding three months to complete a single edition of fifty prints. Coignard once wrote, “The painter is, like everybody, a witness of his time... I focus in my paintings on the anguishes and aggressions of mankind by my gesture of anger, dynamism, and also of hope” Coignard’s dynamic abstract works can be seen in the permanent collections of the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the British Museum, London; the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem; the Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco; the High Museum, Atlanta; the La Jolla Art Center; the Kunst Museum, Soest, Germany; the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; the Musée de Saint Denis, France; the Museum of San Diego; the Phoenix Art Museum; the Musée de Dimona, Israel; the Bibliothèque Municipale, Nice, France; the Bibliotheque Municipale, Tours, France; the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; the Musée d'Art et d'Histoire, Luxembourg; the Musée de l'Abbaye de Sainte Croix, Les Sables d'Olonne, France; Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey; Fairleigh Dickinson University, New Jersey; the University of Cincinnati; the Oklahoma Art Center, Oklahoma City; the University of Alabama; the University of Miami; the University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee; Syracuse University; Colgate University; the Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe; the Historical Society of Montana; Lincoln University, Oxford, Pennsylvania; Glassboro State College, New Jersey; the Dublin Museum, Ireland; New Orleans Museum of Art; Finch College, New York; Wilmington College, Ohio; Jamestown College, North Dakota; Eastern Montana College; Belhaven Collection, North Carolina; Jackson and Mississippi College; Fulton Montgomery College, New York; Northwood Institute, Michigan; South African National Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Montreal, Canada.