Sophie Coroller — Lumière Inside
Past: September 5 → 28, 2012
You have to imagine, throughout the nineteenth century, the hard, grueling, almost suicidal, dedication of a prestigious line of artists who sought, come what may, to create a still elusive material: Light. Their challenge? To no longer compose only with line and color, stone or earth, but with radiance. Turner, and after him the Impressionists, were obsessed by this mad dream. Rodin, be it in his studio or in an exhibition, struck the eye with beds of marble and plaster, from which sprang an almost blinding whiteness, according to Rilke. Also, all of twentieth century sculpture, traversing and piercing volumes, seems to shape the light and air. As for Matisse, he said bluntly, “Painting must posses the power of generating light.” What more can I say?
Sophie Coroller is fully part of this ambition. She uses means of expression of a profound originality and subtlety unrelated to the spectacular and aggressive neon debauchery that has become so common in contemporary creation. Her materials, stated on after another, give the impression of a rigorous chronological inventory: Slate, steel springs, aluminum, pyrex tubes, transparent polyester, fiberglass and carbon. Giving birth, at the price of mastery and intensive labor, to frames of precise and repeated patterns. Similar to modules of marquetry, they give rhythm to the space in ranges of white, grey and black. The format always comes from the square or double-square pattern. There are also structures, the Verticals Series that redraws the space from an axis in aluminum and carbon, placed upon a glass base with supernatural fluidity.
The classical tradition of Art defends the search for stability. From this perspective, a powerful work offers the impression of being immutable, of resisting—compact and indivisible—alteration. In a famous poem, Théophile Gautier wondered, “Everything passes/ Robust art/ Alone in eternity/ The bust/ Survives the city.” Sophie Coroller’s work, by proposing a network of rigorous and very pure patterns, also conveys this sense of consubstantial unity. However, it very quickly goes beyond this first level to brush against a much more complex truth.
The finesse of the components, the delicacy of the lines, the feeling of lightness, of transparency, of reflection, the delicate and precious glimmer, like water shimmering, seem to speak of the fragility of the universe, its variability and even its latent obsolescence. In a society where weakness has become intolerable, where the dominant voice hammers away ceaselessly that we must be solid, unshakable, Sophie Coroller’s creations are like a wake-up call, reminding us of our uncertainties and, especially, our nuances. It is even more remarkable that this “bursting-in” by a certain “chaos”— in the words of director Jean-François Peyret—make for a simple and obvious harmony.
In the original crucible of abstraction, in the heart of the 1910s, an artist like Kasimir Malevitch demanded the abandonment of drawing because he believed in a new lyrical élan. Painting ethereal form, he cried: “Sail! Infinity, the free white abyss, is before you!” The almost musical tenor of Sophie Coroller’s work, her way of discretely transcending mere matter, to the point of encouraging expansion, even speed, invites the question—Why not the speed of light… ?
Opening Tuesday, September 4, 2012 at 7 PM
14, rue Debelleyme
T. 01 42 76 91 57 — F. 01 42 76 91 57
Tuesday – Saturday, 11 AM – 7 PM
Other times by appointment