There are many wonderful artists in many different ways. I often tell you about them and always find that half of my quest in life, after creating itself, is finding others who create also. Amongst the wonderful artists I know there is one who is veritably genial: Gilbert Legrand.
He's known as the artist of les petites choses, or little things, but what petites choses really means is everyday things, found things, mundane things. I like the word mundane even though there's little to like about what it evokes. Mundane may mean everyday, up to a point, but, really, it infers banality and ordinariness. At a deeper level still, it means unimaginative. It is precisely the juxtaposition between what he calls 'little, mundane things' and what said things really look like after they've received the Gilbert treatment that elevates Gilbert to a god-like level of artistry. Think I'm in raptures over nothing? Well, watch this.
See what I mean? Are you grinning yet? I could (and often do) leaf through images of his objects for hours and they never fail to surprise me, make me smile and often laugh. I also seek to recognise the objects he has used for his sculptures and I must tell you that I don't always succeed.
If you have little children, I encourage you to get yourself a set of postcards of his sculptures and question your little ones: can they recognise the little things? I bet they can't! He's so imaginative at giving these items personalities that most of the time all you see is... a dog, or a fox, or a waiter, or an opera singer. If you're lucky enough to understand French, then do yourself a favour and watch him explain how he gets to work...
Visit his site and have a good look or, better still, get yourself the two books that feature his wonderfully imaginative creations. After you get to know him and his work, I can assure you it will be impossible to look at a set of pliers and see just... pliers. Gilbert Génial!
[I particularly adore these Happy Dogs]