THE POWER OF FRENCH CONTEMPORARY PAINTING – New beginnings Part 3
Thomas Auriol, Sans titre, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 50 cm, 2018, courtesy of the artist
Welcome to the 3rd part of our article about THE POWER OF FRENCH CONTEMPORARY PAINTING – New beginnings! As a French painter myself, I’ve wanted to tell you more about the scene for YEARS. Many are missing – Lévy-Lasne’s conference included about 120 artists – so a tough selection was made. In this article, I will introduce a panorama of the scene from my humble position without elaborating on each painter. Please check websites and links for more information.
French Painting is still mostly associated with modernism – or even impressionism. And indeed, when New York replaced Paris as the Capital of Contemporary Art after WWII, the painting scene started to seriously wilt – excepting lyrical abstraction that I am willingly setting aside. In the ’80s, few were still talking about painting in France anymore. The Art Schools (Écoles des Beaux-Arts) in the ’90s and 00’s only taught seriously drawing and painting for one miserable year. Even when the students were interested, the teachers regularly pushed them over to other media. This is my experience, but also one of many colleagues I’ve encountered over the years. The Beaux-Arts de Paris kept some painting and drawing classes accessible, but they were clearly not the stars of the school.
But, surprisingly, painting survived and is now burgeoning with strength. As if this time of latency had prepared for a new beginning. Read Part 1 HERE and Part 2
Iris Levasseur, bbp marbre, watercolour on paper, 114,5x224cm, 2015, courtesy of the artist
Iris Levasseur, oil version orange, black stone and watercolour on paper, 129,5 x22-cm, 2019, courtesy of the artist
14.04 – 29.09 2019, Intriguing Uncertainties, The Parkview Green Museum, Beijing March – April 2019, Dialogues, Galerie Odile Ouizeman, Paris