Since the 1980s the island's man-made landscape has evolved into a locus for encounters between nature and sculpture. Now home to some 60 works, the Sculpture Wood reflects today's principal trends, with monumental and more discreet pieces shown on a permanent or temporary basis.
The 'Island of Stones' adventure on Vassivière Island began in 1983. A local group of artists and art lovers formed the Limousin Contemporary Art and Sculptures (LAC&S) association and invited a dozen French and international artists to work with the local stone – granite – as a lead-up to the Region's first granite symposium. The venture's success meant that it was repeated over the following years and in 1987 steps were taken to create an exhibition venue.
The Sculpture Wood that ultimately resulted comprises two segments: the granite sculptures created between 1983 and 1985, and the works initiated by the Art Centre since 1988 – direct commissions from artists, loans from the National and Regional Art Collections, public commissions and loans from private collectors.
Dotted over woodland, grassland and the lakeshore, the sculptures offer themselves to the visitor almost fortuitously, according to the season and the path taken. This island totally given over to art has also seen an architectural upsurge: the visionary building by Aldo Rossi and Xavier Fabre (1989–1991), the artist residency facilities in the castle refurbished by Berger&Berger and BuildingBuilding (2012), Yona Friedman's signs (2009) and Hans-Walter Müller's inflatable modules (2007).
For further information on the individual works:
Bois de Sculptures
Copyright: Cdt Creuse.
Charte paysagère (télécharger des extraits du texte)
Charte architecturale (télécharger des extraits du texte)
Témoignages sonores :
Un bois de sculptures
Esquisse architecturale et paysagère des équipements et aménagements de Vassivière dans le cadre d'un développement durable
Charte paysagère du pays de Vassivière : boire l'eau du lac
Le troisième signe
Xavier de la Porte