Pascal-Désir Maissonneuve De tartaar, 1929-30 | The tartar, 1929-30 Koraal en een verzameling van verschillende schelpen | Coral and assemblage of various shells 18 x 17 x 12 cm
Pascal-Désir Maissonneuve De duivel, circa 1927-28 | The devil , approx 1927-28 Verzameling van verschillende schelpen | Assemblage of various shells 25 x 22 x 19 cm
Pascal-Désir Maissonneuve De kroonprins, circa 1927-28 | The crown prince, approx 1927-28 Verzameling van verschillende schelpen | Assemblage of various shells 29 x 22 x 11 cm
Trained as a mosaicist, Pascal-Désir Maisonneuve reconstructs Gallo-Roman mosaics for museums. In his spare time, he looks for strange objects and works of art he sells as junk dealer. Known for his anarchistic and anti-clerical opinions, in 1927 and 1928 he makes effigies of sovereigns and politicians using shells held together with plaster. As parody gradually recedes, his work leads him to philosophical investigations centered on the themes of the face and its expression.
Jack Senné, a painter and collector of folklore artefacts, lived in Bordeaux and knew Pascal-Désir. When he met Jean Dubuffet, André Breton and Benjamin Péret on a fleamarket in Paris in 1948, all three of them wanted to buy work by Pascal-Désir Maisonneuve. Jack Senné informed Dubuffet that André Lhote had a few. Eventually, Dubuffet acquired nine works and asked Jack Senné to write Pascal-Désir Maisonneuve’s biography.