Gaston Dufour (Gaston Duf.) Rhin’-ôcêrhâûs’-he Ipp’-ôptâme | Rhin’-ôcêrhâûs’-he Ipp’-ôptâme Potlood op notitiepapier | Lead pencil on notebook paper 22 x 18 cm
Gaston Dufour (Gaston Duf.) Rinâûçêr'-hôse, circa 1948 | Rinâûçêr'-hôse, approx. 1948 Potlood op notitiepapier | Lead pencil on notebook paper 22 x 18 cm
Born into a family of ten children, Gaston Duf. works in a mine in his native region for a few years. Of delicate health, he ends up being unable to work at all and takes refuge in alcohol before being interned at the age of twenty. The physician notices him hiding drawings in his clothes. They are drawn in lead pencil on paper he tears from the margins of newspapers he salvages. Thereafter, his doctor provides him with drawing materials. The recurring subjects of his works are a kind of buffoon and a protean animal, which fancifully spelt captions indicate as being a rhinoceros.
Thirty works by Gaston Duf. were given to Jean Dubuffet by Dr. Paul Bernard, including two series of drawings in the form of a dismantled notepad. Dubuffet in turn donated a number of works by Gaston Duf. to a few doctors in 1950. The remaining drawings have since remained part of the Collection de l’Art Brut.