Tragique du paysage — Chapitre I


Painting, photography

Tragique du paysage
Chapitre I

Past: May 7 → June 18, 2011

The “Tragedy of the landscape” is the famous expression of the sculptor David d’Angers when he discovered a painting of Gaspard Friedrich, The Sea of Ice, in the context of this famous phrase to define the art of Friedrich : “Here is a man who has discovered the tragedy of the landscape”. If the title of this exhibition recaptures these known words, it is not necessarily to represent the “tragic” landscapes in a literal sense, but rather how today’s artists perceive landscape in Contemporary art through painting and photography.

If, according to Oscar Spengler1, nature is in fact an experience saturated by personal connotations, one can say that landscape in general does not exist. There are nothing but singular natures and the moments when one captures the human existence in their own concrete duality: time and space correspond.

Going even farther and to exceed all determinisms, one can therefore recall the Japanese philosophy of Watsuji Tetsuro2, in which the landscape has “mediance” ( in that the landscape acts as a medium for the historical, geographical, and human condition): the landscape as a structured moment of the human existence in a given environment. The artist, as a member of a community at a moment in history, is the privileged witness to these structured moments that form our conception of landscape. He detects his main lines and he emphasizes it and he can denounce it. Each artist here shows us what is a landscape, this “prairial environment” in Europe, through painting or photography. It is therefore the painting of the landscape that we have learned to see as the actual landscape.

Like perspective, the landscape places the viewer in the center and at a distance from its construction: without regarding, there is no painting, no landscape. It is not only an object of nature, but also a cultural construction, an invention.

1 Oscar Spengler The decline of the Orient.1918. I. p 234.

2 W. Tetsurô Fudo The Human Environment. Translation by Augustin Berque. CNERS Ed.

  • Opening Saturday, May 7, 2011 5 PM → 9 PM
Eric Mircher Gallery Gallery
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26, rue Saint-Claude

75003 Paris

T. 01 48 87 02 13

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Saint-Sébastien – Froissart

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The artists