(Mendoza, Argentina, 1928)
Julio Le Parc is one of the most renowned figures of Op art and Kinetic art. He studied at the National University of the Arts in Argentina, where he was first interested in the relationships between light and form. Immersed in the radical environment of the student movements of his native country, between 1955 and 1958 he participated in the occupations of the Academy of Fine Arts and in the reformulation of its programs, oriented by the proposals of avant-garde artists such as the “Arte-Concreto-Invención” movement.
In 1958 he travelled to Paris, because he was granted a scholarship from the French Cultural Service, where he met artists such as Victor Vasarely and other important representatives of Kinetic art. From them, Le Parc extracted not only its formal proposals regarding movement, but also its political implications, as a way to articulate aesthetic experiences without the need of previous knowledge or any sort of familiarity with the art world. Such implications derived into collective practices of the “Groupe de Recherche d’Art Visuel” (GRAV), of which he was a founding member; guided by a rejection of the position of art in capitalism. The collective emphasized anonymity and the participation of spectators through the application of industrial, mechanical, and kinetic techniques alike.
Afterwards, he participated in the “Atelier Populaire” during May 68 in France, as well as in various avant-garde, radical publications, anchoring his production – always close to Kineticism – in a social and political commitment that conceives spectators no longer as participants in the work, but as co-authors of it.
Julio Le Parc currently lives and works in Paris, France.