Jacky Coville was born on March 20, 1936 in Sèvres, near Paris.
Although he likes drawing and does very well in art class, his parents encourage him to study engineering. After graduating, he works in the design department of Sud Aviation, an aircraft manufacturing company. Still fond of art and painting, he starts to put together several art exhibitions throughout the seven factories/branches of the group. One of them features Fernand Léger, an artist he admires. After nine years, Jacky decides to devote all his time to his fascination/passion for ceramics. He moves to the Côte d’Azur in 1971, attracted by avant-guard art movement of the “Ecole de Nice” and also the sun. In 1976, Jacky cannot resist the opportunity to own the gigantic kiln previously used by the renowned ceramist Roland Brice who had shaped Fernand Leger’s works. He still lives and works today in the house that welcomed Mr. Leger back in the 1950’s.
As soon as Jacky settles down in Biot, he starts to work on very large pieces and dares to create colossal sculptures in glazed stoneware which have become his trademark, such gigantic artworks are still underrepresented in today’s art world.
“He creates a poetic world populated by hybrid creatures, half-man, half-beast. A marvellous world that speaks to the mischievous child in us”.
Coville on himself “Some say my work is singular, as far as I know, it stands out from the current trends by its provocative aspects both in shape/form and the use of primary, sharp and lively colours. I am inspired by hybrid characters, mixes of humans and animals, mocking our well structured world. Although the result is playful, the realisations of such pieces, sometimes up to 7 metres high, demands strong architectural skills. The components of my works are assembled with a mixture of cubic rigour and free spirit. Small pieces are always full of humour, sometimes a little wicked with a touch of eroticism.”
Since 1970, Jacky Coville’s work has been exhibited in France and in many countries around the world such as Japan (1976), Germany, and Belgium. He has regular shows in Italy and was awarded the Faenza Gold Medal (1974), one of the most important competitions in the world in the contemporary art sector. He also won the Gold Medal of Vallauris (1984). His sculptures are shown at the Modern Art Museum and Contemporary Art Museum of Nice, they were even displayed in the Fontaine Saint-Sulpice in Paris (2000). Institutions such as The National Library of France, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris and the Manufacture de Sèvres have acquired some of his pieces.