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André Bindler, Musée de la Doller

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Visiting Information

Originally located in Sickert, France, most works are relocated to the Ecomusée d´Alsace, which is generally open from early March to late November each year. Small entrance fees are collected; these allow the visitor access to the entire museum and its collections.



About the Artist/Site

At the age of fourteen André Bindler began to work in the local textile industry of his natal region of Alsace, in northeastern France. Except for a short period during the late 1930s and early ‘40s when he completed his military service in the French army, he spent his entire working life in this industry, first as a weaver and then as a machine adjuster.

In 1979, at age 57, he was declared disabled because of lingering effects of an injury he had sustained at the beginning of the Second World War. To kill time now that he no longer worked on a fulltime basis, Bindler started to make sculptures. He began with concrete animals such as giraffes and bears and, from 1983 on, he began constructing replicas of such famous Parisian monuments as Notre Dame Cathedral, the Eiffel Tower, and the Arc de Triomphe, all at human scale. In subsequent years he continued by creating replicas of a variety of churches in the Alsace area, of over twenty houses in the village where he lived, of the Azay-le-Rideau castle in the Loire area, and of a variety of other buildings.

Bindler also made life-sized figurative sculptures; his subjects ranged from local types such as farmers and workmen to famous literary or historical personalities such as Romeo and Juliet, Queen Mary Stuart or General Leclerc. All works were installed around his house in the small community of Sickert. Bindler titled his art environment the Musée de la Doller and passersby were invited to visit the site by means of a sign along the road that directed them to this museum.

Bindler’s burst of creative energy lasted about six years, until 1989. By that time he no longer had sufficient energy to work further, so he concluded his creative efforts.

The future of the sculpture garden would have become uncertain, but in 1991 the road sign to Bindler’s museum was by chance noticed by Marc Grodwohl, then director of the regional Ecomusée d’Alsace. This museum had opened in 1984 to present the socio-cultural and industrial ethnografica of the area.

The decision was made to transfer all of Bindler’s creations to this museum and to include them in the permanent collection, placing them, to the greatest extent possible, in their original arrangement. Museum volunteers, advised by Bindler himself, spent years installing and, if necessary, restoring Bindler’s comprehensive oeuvre. His works remain on view at the Ecomusée d Alsace, which is generally open from early March to late November each year. Small entrance fees are collected; these allow the visitor access to the entire museum and its collections.

 ~Henk van Es

 

 



Map and site information


Ungersheim, Grand Est, France
Latitude/Longitude: 47.877896 / 7.304005

Visiting Information

Originally located in Sickert, France, most works are relocated to the Ecomusée d´Alsace, which is generally open from early March to late November each year. Small entrance fees are collected; these allow the visitor access to the entire museum and its collections.



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