Aux Beaux Carrés by Daniel Buren

From To

For the ninth year running, Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche is giving carte blanche to a contemporary artist. Who is the guest artist for this year’s exhibition? Daniel Buren. This winter, at 24 rue de Sèvres, the artist is showing ‘Aux Beaux Carrés: travaux in situ’, an exhibition in two Acts inspired by the square panes that make up the store’s famous glass roofs.

In Act I, from 9 January to 18 February, the French artist will embellish the department store by installing huge pieces under the central glass roofs, on the second floor and on the store windows. His legendary alternating black and white stripes, measuring 8.7 centimetres wide, will highlight the central escalator and the columns on rue de Sèvres. A true artistic feat based on a play of form, movement, colour and light.

Here’s a secret for you: Daniel Buren will present Act II of his exhibition ‘Aux Beaux Carrés: travaux in situ’ from 29 June to 15 August 2024.


The exhibition

Travaux in situ

Ever faithful to his work in situ, Daniel Buren creates his pieces specifically for their host environment, without using a studio. This rigorous yet minimalist process examines the relationship between artwork and space. Through his own creative language, the artist reveals all the features of the space within which he builds his artwork. After the Palais Royal, the Élysée Palace and even Le Palais d’Iéna, he will now present several original creations made for Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche. 


Daniel Buren, Graphic sketches of the grilles located under the glass roofs, graphic sketch for the Cabanes éclatées (‘Exploded Cabins’) 



With « Aux Beaux Carrés: travaux in situ », Daniel Buren is taking a bold gamble by playing with one of Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche’s most iconic features: the glass roof at the heart of the department store. In front of the central escalator, the panes of the glass ceiling have inspired two enormous artworks made up of over 1,500 polycarbonate squares and pieces of vinyl, white on one side and pink on the other, which spread over the space and diffract the light, like an incredible 3D checkerboard. On rue de Sèvres, another checkerboard of white and coloured squares will run the entire length of the eight store windows.

On the second floor, two Cabanes éclatées, one yellow and one blue, invite visitors to enter and wander at will. These creations become a theatre for a spectacular immersive experience, thanks to the infinite reflections from the mirrors covering the walls. The space is thus transformed, acting as a giant kaleidoscope. 

On the escalators, on the columns on rue de Sèvres and on the reversible canvas tote bag accompanying the exhibition, Daniel Buren has used his famous « visual tool »: alternating vertical stripes measuring 8.7 centimetres wide. The artist uses this signature motif in situ to reveal the unique features of different spaces. Today, those spaces are Le Bon Marché’s.

From 2 February, find the exhibition catalogue in store, which includes an exclusive interview between Daniel Buren and Anne Baldassari, curator and art historian. 


For the very first time, Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche is organising its Carte Blanche event in two parts.

Discover Act II of the exhibition « Aux Beaux Carrés: travaux in situ » from 29 June to 15 August 2024. 

Conversation avec Daniel Buren


Le Bon Marché has invited the world-renowned artist Daniel Buren to take up residence for its ninth Carte Blanche event, with the exhibition « Aux Beaux Carrés: travaux in situ ». The artist analyses, questions and highlights the space by revealing its unique features. Discover what defines his work by exploring his personal artistic lexicon.