June 26, 2013

René Delrieu, Jardin décoré/Decorated garden


with permission of the "archives départementales du Cantal"

Above picture, courtesy of the departmental archives of Cantal, shows the decorated garden of René Delrieu (1930-2008), who lived in the small community of Ally in the Auvergne area in France.

Delrieu was a blacksmith, who later in life became a mechanic of agricultural machinery. 

Affter his retirement, around 1994, he began embellishing the garden in front of his house. He made installations and sculptures from sheet metal, and added frescoes to the exterior wall of the house, such as the scene on the picture below that depicts a shoe smith at work.



A number of his creations have been performed two-dimensional, using sheet-metal, such as the scene of a horse race, painted in lively colors and attached to the wired fence of the garden.


This small, but enjoyable ensemble can no longer be viewed in situ. After Delrieu died and his house was sold, the collection found its way to various interested parties, among whom the Musée de Veinazès, located in La Capelle-del-Fraisse.

This private museum in the Auvergne area some ten years ago has been founded by Raymond Coste in order to exhibit his collection of traditional agricultural machinery and utensils used in tradional crafts. 

His son Bernard Coste,  who partners his father in running the museum, is quite interested in folk and irregular art, so the museum recently has opened a new department with creations in this field.

It nowadays exhibits part of René Delrieu's creations. Bernard Coste also took care to make pictures of the Delrieu site (in 2006), a collection he donated to the archives of the Cantal department.

A wonderful new acquistition of the museum, enriching this department,  is the collection of wooden replicas of old buildings, wash houses,  churches, rows of houses, etc. made during the last twenty years by Robert Goudergues.

moodel of a row of traditional houses in Aurillac 

Above story shows (and is a tribute to) the potential on a regional level of private parties being active in safeguarding artistic, artisinal and traditonal heritage. 

Documentation/more pictures

René Delrieu
Jardin décoré
Ally, Cantal, France
not extant anymore, but part of the creations exhibited in:
Musée de Veinazès
Lacaza
15120 La Capelle-del-Fraisse, Auvergne, France

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