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Artist Niki de Saint Phalle dies in San Diego

De Saint Phalle was married to the late Swiss artist Jean Tinguely

(Keystone Archive)

The French-born painter and sculptress Niki de Saint Phalle, who was married to the late Swiss artist Jean Tinguely, has died in the United States.

Famous for her giant, colourful "Nana" sculptures and her "Tarot Garden" in Tuscany, Italy, the 71-year-old was forever linked in Switzerland with Tinguely.

Together, she and her husband created the extravagant "Stravinski fountain" at the Pompidou Centre in Paris. Following Tinguely's death in 1991, she moved to San Diego on America's west coast, dedicating herself to his artistic legacy.

She was able to witness the opening of Basel's Museum Jean Tinguely, designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta, in 1996. This was followed by the opening of the "Espace Tinguely" in Fribourg two years later.

Her last major exhibition in Switzerland ran at the Museum Jean Tinguely earlier this year.

Her death follows a lengthy illness.

swissinfo with agencies

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