Jean Linard, the visionary artist who created a bric-à-brac "cathedral" in the town of Neuvy-Deux-Clochers, near Bourges, died last year. Without his careful attention to the property and the slightly crazy mosaic-covered artwork he filled it with, the site has fallen into disrepair. Patrick Martinat has a report (Vend cathédrale, art brut, bel ouvrage, November 17) for Le Monde (my translation):
The inheritors of the property not knowing how to keep up such a sanctuary, the whole installation has suffered in a disturbing way after its first winter without its creator, even though it was not a harsh one, which is a bad omen for future ones. This spring yet more damage to a split buttress, with shards of ceramic around it, has shown the urgency of the situation. Local communities, asked for help, have not quite known how to respond to the present owners. They have for now approved several ways to profit from the site, which had a relatively stable summer despite the absence of any caretaker on site.While various government entities consider whether to protect the cathedral as a site of historic importance, the heirs have begun to look into ways of auctioning off parts of the work to interested buyers.