Marcel Bascoulard

France

Marcel Bascoulard was 19 when he witnessed the murder of his father by his mother. Soon after he became homeless, living in precarious shelters in the Avaricum district, in Bourges. He would spend the end of his life in the cab of a truck offered by an owner of a breakage. He learned by himself how to draw. He regularly represented the streets of his city, in a wide angle and completely empty, emanating a kind of realistic vertigo. Admired and outcast at the same time, asocial and eccentric, he liked to dress as a woman, in dresses that he sometimes made himself. In one of his letters, he confided: “If I walk around in a feminine outfit, it is because I find it more aesthetic. For the sake of art, when I wear a women’s dress, I take with me my camera and I ask people I know to take a picture of me. ” Living near the Morlet photo studio, Bascoulart began to be photographed in the 1940s. In these photographs with notched edges and in small formats, the expression of his face is always the same: the face slightly leaning to one side and without makeup. His waist is accentuated, the skirt blown up by petticoats, he resembles a young girl ready to be married. Sometimes he looks like a housewife in an apron, before transforming himself, later on, into an elegant bourgeois. Fashion changed, his silhouette shrank down and his hair became white. In 1970, he wore black skai apron to resemble a samurai warrior. A broken mirror he held in each shot is an additional strange detail. Marcel Bascoulard staged himself, creating a gallery of disturbing characters – echo of his murderous mother (?) – a marginalized figure, he was accepted by the society thanks to those who took his picture. On January 12th, 1978, he was assassinated in Asnières-lès-Bourges, in an area called Les Gargaudières, strangled by a 23-year old homeless.

Marcel Bascoulard

ABSTRACT SEX
Group Exhibition
Artissima · Torino, IT
Oct 29 – Nov 2, 2019