Past: December 6, 2012 → January 12, 2013
Catherine Maria Chapel (born in France in 1968)
For Catherine Maria Chapel, matter and expression are one. She knows paper intimately as well as the fluidity in watercolours and ink. Spaces without names or specific references emerge. : The underwater world, the sky, vegetation or heat’s intense luminosity are suggested. Figures or fragments of figures come to life on these backgrounds, out of a basic contour or as cut-out silhouettes. Chapel’s work evokes journeys into the unconscious or an awakened dream. Her drawings and collages are poetic reminiscences, juxtaposed fragments of beauty… Reviving memories of crisp blue hours when the summer sun is setting, a breeze travelling past, the transparency of water, sensations and forgotten feelings… The artist is fascinated by art at the turn of the XXth Century, particularly the mysticism of Odilon Redon. She disperses a gentle melancholy, a lasciviousness that invites contemplation. At the same time however, the expressiveness and sensuality of her figures are perfectly contemporary.
Lee Jin-Woo (born in South Korea in 1959)
Lee Jin-Woo builds his works by layering sheets of traditional Korean Hanji paper. He draws, paints and deposits matter (pigments, Indian ink, charcoal, earth…) on the multiple layers of translucent paper. Progressively elements are covered and buried and the process is started over with each new sheet of Hanji. The final result is shaped like a painting yet between two and three dimensions. The pictorial surface hides other images, colours and moods which have been buried in the paper fibers like strata of time, memory or dream. Sometimes elements are visible through the translucent layering and our gaze travels in an incessant go between surface and depth, alternating between one point of view and another. A feeling of calm, of time held still emanates from Lee’s work. It is like an invitation for contemplation.
Peter Martensen (born in Denmark in 1953)
Surreal delirium, everyday life revisited… Over the past few years, the artist has been developing the world of “specialists” and “experts” — people who have chosen to explore a very small field and whose work is almost impenetrable to the rest of us. Peter Martensen paints people in familiar scenes: men in white overcoats with their backs to the world, wandering, looking bewildered, lost in their reflection. Yet, these seemingly ordinary situations have been decontextualized. Thus, men wander in the countryside, in an undefined, unrecognizable space, like poor mad men in an asylum garden. As a result, images are enigmatic, absurd, almost comical; the unsettled spectator observes and lives the situations, unable to access his usual panel of references. Martensen deploys humor and mild irony, a gentle yet fine observation of humanity as well as a barely dissimulated criticism of our times. However, any attempt to determine the subject matter and themes in Martensen’s work has its limits. His propositions are open to multiple interpretations… Additionally, the figurative components in his paintings and drawings are not only chosen for their narrative load, but also for their visual and plastic potential. Thus, Martensen’s works are the result of a formal game too. This dimension is fundamental in understanding and interpreting his work which lies between narrative discourse and a purely plastic approach.
Min Jung-Yeon (born in South Korea in 1979)
Min Jun-Yeon’s work mingles straight lines and geometric shapes with fluid outlines. The artist evokes soft feminine silhouettes as well as energetic, masculine structures. These contradictory and complementary elements are at the core of her world. A strange world where materialized air, like a soap bubble, slowly moves and shatters like glass when it meets reality (L’air fragile, 2011). Her universe is figurative, minutely described, so prosaic that her fragile air cannot withstand it, splinters, shatters, finally becoming sharp shards on the ground…Thus is described the eternal process of creation, construction, evolution and destruction, which surrounds us with its perpetual motion.
Lyndi Sales (born in South Africa in 1973)
After being diagnosed with a visual impairment, artist Lyndi Sales started questioning the idea of perception; what we choose to believe we are seeing, what we do not want to see or what we want to see without success; In this quest for enhanced vision, similar to meditation, hypnosis, hallucinogenic drugs or psychoanalysis, she transforms disturbing or mundane images taken from everyday life (missing children notices, tabloids, color atlases etc.) through decoupage to create delicate and large lace designs merely held together by pins. Using a scan of her eye as seen through a microscope for instance, she reshapes the outline of her cornea to create an abstract image. No matter how concrete her starting point might be, Lyndi Sales reclaims it to state her desire to escape, to find utopia, to shape and transform a sometimes ugly and painful reality.
Maibritt Ulvedal Bjelke (born in Denmark in 1967)
For the past twenty years, Maibritt Ulvedal Bjelke has been exploring painting, focusing solely on the process, colour and matter, as well as her physical and intellectual involvement. Since 2009, the artist has left behind the gesture painting that had until then been her trademark for more geometric and graphic compositions, with colour and light remaining at the centre of her work. The series étude-de-stella shows the follow-up to her series tangram-suite d’étude (2010) which was inspired by the Tangram, a solitary Chinese puzzle, constituted by seven geometric shapes. The artist creates small-scaled collages, each using eight triangles cut out of surfaces striped with fine lines of paint. All combined, the bright colours, the juxtaposition and break of lines, give a feeling of exploding movement, of vibrating light. These painting-objects with their slightly curved surface are reminiscent of American minimalism. Frank Stella ’s famous quote “Light is Life” is particularly apposite here. However, despite Stella’s manifesto, these paper stars are not devoid of all emotional content as Maibritt Ulvedal Bjelke ’s work has always been tinged with emotional depth.
Yoo Hye-Sook (born in South Korea in 1964)
Desire is the underlying theme of all of Yoo Hye-Sook’s work. Until today, she revealed this fundamental and animal-like desire in each of the mundane objects she chose to study with the painstaking attention to detail that is her trademark. Someone’s hair, underwear, a fur coat became more than their physical incarnation to become sensuous and intriguing specimens, even veering toward eeriness.
With this new series, the artist studies another kind of body. In these more abstract works, more focused on matter, desire turns into a destructive force. She uses pencil like a dagger to pierce through Hanji, the extremely thin traditional Korean paper she marouflages on a black round canvas. Bewilderment ensues: cosmic system or microscopic view? Fragment or Grand All? The circle intrigues, beguiles, attracts the viewer; and these untitled curiosities remain tantalizingly familiar yet impossible to define
Opening Thursday, December 6, 2012 9 PM → 6 PM
48, rue de Turenne
T. 01 42 76 00 33 — F. 01 42 76 00 10
Tuesday – Saturday, noon – 7 PM
Other times by appointment