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Lili ou Tony, 1965

Niki de Saint Phalle
Mixed technique (wire netting, fabric, wool, polyester and paint)
236.8 x 130.5 x 79 cm


Full and colourful, Lili ou Tony is part of the Nanas series, her only known mural installation.

An emblematic Nana in Niki de Saint Phalle’s work, she who placed women at the heart of her art: “The world is a breast”, she said. These goddess women, light-hearted giants, free of taboos and constraints, are completely free. Their bodies are a celebration, a retrieval. Lili ou Tony, Tony or Lili, two identities free of decision-making, as Niki wanted it. She who called her dolls children continues to play at brightening reality, thereby giving people pleasure, and, in doing so, bringing them closer together.


Creation, for Niki de Saint Phalle, was primarily a mental and human liberation.

Self-taught, she discovered art during therapy, following a depression when she was twenty-three. A turning point. Her first target-paintings, her performances were cathartic. Lily ou Tony, her only known mural piece which features in the exhibition, is part of her emblematic series of Nanas, that celebrates a free and liberated woman. She would undertake a number of projects, erecting very contemporary bridges between disciplines: from drama to publishing, including cinema.

Exhibition La Lumière des Mondes (The Light of the worlds)
From 23rd May to 15th Decembre 2019
Under the creative guidance of Garance Primat
Curators: Hervé Mikaeloff et Ingrid Pux