Artist Statement

In my work, relations between mankind and animals cultivate my mind, my vision. I was raised surrounded by horses, dogs, cats, sheep, goats, turkeys and barn swallows; my father, a trapper, hunter and fisherman soon familiarized the young me with animal skins and carcasses. This closeness aroused my childhood, was a part of my daily life and led to a great occasion of accessing a wild and captivating world.  Life and death, children and beasts: all would then express commonness, the innocence of playfulness, a world-view. Such associations can suggest many interpretations these days according to each individual's milestones and journey and evoke either mystery or oddness.

 

From a philosophical standpoint, I wonder about both relations of power and protection emerging between men and animals, leading us alternately to killing or preservation. And then, I come to realize how deep is the general discomfort about the animal entity. " Can they think? Are they endowed with reason? Can they express feelings similar to ours? Should we forbid eating them? Why do they remain silent? "  (Elisabeth de Fontenay, Le Silence des Bêtes « La philosophie à l’épreuve de lanimalité », France, Fayard, 784 p.) 

 

I make drawing and painting become one and turn into an ambiguous encounter between the Man and the Animal. My pictorial explorations sometimes derive from old pictures picked out of family albums or also draw inspiration from photographs I have taken myself. Because of piercing eyes, of an eloquent body posture, of an inspiring human figure or of an evocative animal presence, a picture catches my attention. Then, I take it out of its photographic context, isolate it on the support and make it my own. Never left alone, the character is forced to coexist with an animal or some other element sharing the same space; a new mate that does not always remain faithful to its normal proportions to increase the ambiguity in this proximity. Finally, the Man and the Animal unite through my brush, through my pen, and liven up in a modern scenery often abstract and hazy. In some pieces, sewing patterns and gold leafs enrich my work with views on temporality and the expertise of the past. 

 

Texts translated by Gabrielle Rousseau