July 18, 2013

Charles Clave, Musée Charlot/Charlot's Museum


                          

Il les avait vus....He had seen them.........

Charles Clave (1920-1998), nicknamed Charlot, from the french community of Frasne-le-Chateau, claimed he had an astral contact with aliens, whose likeness he captured in homemade sculptures in a naive style.

Life and works

Probably all his life  Clave has lived in Frasne-le-Chateau, in any case he lived there with his mother in a house on the rue des Grandes Vergers, later living there alone following the death of his mother.

He had various jobs, being a cultivator, then doing a training to become a police officer, a job he waived however, to become a postman instead, later changing to a job as a mason. 


Biographical details are sketchy, so it is unclear when Clave began making his sculptures. I presume it may have been in the eighties of the former century. 

All together he has made some twenty sculptures of aliens, which he exposed in the sleeping room, around his centrally located bed. This ensemble of sculptures, a mini art environment,  locally became known as "Musée Charlot", and as far as I understand it could be visisted by the public on sunday afternoons.

Following Clave's death, the house has been sold. It nowadays is owned by Christine Péquignol, who runs an art gallery on the premises, named Empreinte d'Art (Art's Footprint). Both by a plaque on the facade and by a page on the gallery's website, the memory of Charles Clave is being kept alive.

The city hall of Frasne-le-Chateau takes care of (part of?) the sculptures the community received as a legacy.

Documentation
* French cultural  magazine Création Franche, no 5, 1992 (out of my reach), has an article about Clave 

Charles Clave
Musée Charlot
17 rue des Grands Vergers
70700 Frasne-le-Chateau, Franche-Comté area, FR
site no longer extant


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