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Tour Aux Jambes - Henry T. Segerstrom
By Jean Dubuffet
1973–1980, Polystyrene, polyester, and epoxy
Jean Dubuffet’s Tour Aux Jambes can be translated as “Encirclement of Limbs” or “Tower of Legs”—which describes Dubuffet’s theme of building a monolithic structure from entwined elements.
Jean Dubuffet’s treatment of “limbs” is common to his anthropomorphic approach to sculpture where the human contour is unmistakable. Selected by Henry T. Segerstrom from a series of maquettes made in 1973, Tour Aux Jambes was acquired for Town Center Park in 1980. Tour Aux Jambes, as defined by the artist, should “in the highest degree, lift one out of context, provoking a surprise and a shock.”

Dubuffet’s earlier practice was mostly in graphics and painting. However, his style of stark contours spreading into webs of color patches speedily developed into a proliferating discourse in three dimensions. Dubuffet’s art balances the quotidian and the fantastic. His work can be whimsical without abandoning the conventions of naturalism.