1928 - Nov 17th. - Armand's birth

Armand Pierre Fernandez born in Nice. He is the only son of Antonio Francisco Fernandez (1898-1992) and Marie Marguerite Jacquet (1907-1973). His father, Antonio, born of a rich Spanish family who emigrated from Algeria, owns a furniture and antique shop.

1933 - His parent's wedding

Armand’s father and mother get married in Grasse where his mother stayed with him at “Le Grand Hotel”.

1934 - The Cours Poisat

Arman attends the Cours Poisat, a school with a majority of girls (he refused to be separated from his friend Micheline).

1936 - Playing chess

He plays chess for the first time and dedicates himself to the improvement of his skills by studying books about the game. This passionate devotion to a subject will characterize him throughout his whole life.

1938 - Discovery of painting

He learns oil painting from his father, an amateur painter.

1940 - The high school in September

He enters the Lycée de Nice and is expelled three months later.  He attends boarding schools in Grasse and Vence before returning to the Lycée de Nice.

1946 - The Bachelor of Philosophy

Arman grants his Baccalaureate in Philosophy and Mathematics at Nice and attends The Cours de Vienne. He enters the Ecole National d'Art Décoratif de Nice and leaves it in 1949 in protest against the social conservatism of the school’s administration. He makes series of little oil paintings of landscapes that his father sells in his shop. He also paints a self-portrait that his parents will keep all of their life. He develops interest in collecting antiques, in particular Chinese Porcelain while buying at auctions for local dealers.

1947 - Yves Klein and Claude Pascal

He meets Yves Klein and Claude Pascal at a judo school in Nice.

1947 - Summer

This year and in 1948 the three friends hitchhike through Europe. In admiration of Vincent Van Gogh, who signed only his first name on his paintings, they decide to give up their surnames. Until 1953 the three are strongly involved, spiritually and intellectually, with Zen Buddhism, Rosicrucianism, Gurdjieff, and Astrology.

1949 - Installation in Paris

Moves to Paris his first major trip to the city to study Archaeology and Oriental art at the École du Louvre in order to become an auctioneer. Begins painting in a Surrealist style.

1950 - Summer - Armand meets Éliane at the "Café des Arts"

1951 - Bushido-Kai Judo

He leaves the Ecole du Louvre and goes to Madrid with Yves Klein to teach at the Bushido-Kai Judo School.

1951 - August 8th - Birth of Marion

Birth of his first daughter, Françoise (a.k.a. Marion).

1952 - In the army

He serves in the Medical corps of the French marines during the Indochina War.

1953 - Abstract painting

Influenced by the Russian immigrant painter Serge Poliakoff and Nicolas de Stael, he starts working on abstract painting. He collaborates with Klein on happenings.

1953 - February 17th - He marries Eliane Radigue

He marries Eliane Radigue (they will divorce in 1971). Claude Pascal is their witness.
He continues to collect antiques and decorative objects. Armand also develops interest in African art after viewing an exhibition in Paris. He moves in an apartment at “9, Parc de la Californie” in Nice with Eliane.

1953 - June 29th - Birth of Anne

Birth of his second daughter, Anne.


[kaʃɛ] n. Use of commercial stamps and/or print characters to make an imprint with either ink, poster paint, acrylic, or oil on a selected medium.

1954 - Influences

Armand sees Kurt Schwitters’s exhibition at Galerie Berggruen and Pollock’s paintings at Studio Fachetti in Paris.
He begins experimenting with rubber stamps and creates his first Cachets.

1954 - Sep. 18th - Birth of Yves

Birth of his first son, Yves.