THE FIGURATIVE ARTS
Very often, due to the dominance of the Parisian creations of the beginning of the century, art critics and historians tended to forget about what was happening in the Occitan lands, up until the 60’s (although artists such as Cezanne and Maillol did receive recognition). However in this period the situation in the field of plastic arts changed drastically as the result of the setting up of the “School of Nice” which shook the established artistic order to it core, featuring names such as Klein, Arman or Raysse. After Nice, Montpellier came into play with the "Support/Surface" group (Viala, Dezeuze). The ferment extended throughout the Occitan area with “Sed/Contra” in Bordeaux and a host of minor groups in Limoges, Marseilles or Montpellier. In Toulouse the “Peinture/Itération” group (with Bru or Cambiaire) grew up alongside artists such as Soulages or Carrade…. And Occitany became a vast gallery of artists open to all the world.
From Sète originated the “Figuration Libre” movement with P. François, Combas, Di Rosa…. And in the same field we can also place Ben (of Nice) one of the few contemporary artists to uphold his Occitan origins. We must also mention a unique phenomenon on the plastic arts field which was: the “Exhibition of Larzac”, an area of exhibitions and theoretical diffusion created in the 70’s by F. Castan, featuring a display of everything today considered in the figurative arts field. The vicinity of «Latin» centres such as Milan and Barcelona, permitted the emergence of a kind of «Mediterranean arc» of artistic creation, which only lacks a full awareness of its intrinsic value.