The best artists of the French art scene

artists - C

Calandre Philippe

Calandre Philippe

Virtuoso of photomontage, Philippe Calandre, transforms industrial sites into labyrinthine cities. At the Espace Vallès, he offers a revisiting of the megalomaniac architecture of modern times, a reconsideration of the great myths of ancient architecture.
Tower of Babel, Babylonian astronomical observatory, cyclopean stone walls, Piranesian bridges, the megalithic monument of Stonehenge…The most unreasonable references come to mind in describing the imaginary landscapes of Philippe CALANDRE. Imaginary? Not altogether, because his work utilizes and adds upon photomontage. From views of industrial sites taken by camera the artist creates digital collages on his computer, matching fragments of images and thus recomposing reality at will. He not only makes all human presence disappear, but he multiplies the confusion of hangars, of silos, of chimneys, of beams, of piping, and of flights of stairs, transforming an already complex real into Daedalusian vision and a waking dream. Grandiloquent architectures of vast perspectives, planted in desert spaces, halfway from the prodigious forge of Vulcan and Mount Othrys of the Titans…

“Industrial architecture has no aesthetic constraint, but just the constraints of of productivity, explains Philippe CALANDRE. It has more free forms, but more violent ones, because they are designed with only productivity in mind.” Departing from this postulate, the photographer allows us to discover worlds as grandiose as they are rickety, megalopolises menaced by collapse. The fate dealt to architecture struck with the delirium of power (whether they be Stalinesque, Mussolinian, or achieved by the madness of capitalist grandeur) is that of cathedrals, of pyramids, and of mausoleums: that of ruin. There exists a powerful poetic from the uncultivated world of industry. Philippe CALANDRE engulfs himself in this imaginary world: dusty buildings, corroded walls, tarnished windows, etc. A veritable magic results, but a cold magic. The truly monumental formats of these impressions (tied to the extreme care brought to the construction of the photographic montages) leads the visitor to the exhibition to enter through the ground floor and into the image. One experiences, before the photomontages of Philippe CALANDRE, a true feeling of being crushed. And a vertigo that takes hold.

Jean-Louis Roux

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Castaignet Michel

Castaignet Michel

Michel Castaignet was born in 1971, he lives and works between Paris and Champagne.

Michel Castaignet’s painting is made of graphical and temporal disruptions. The different elements of the painting seem abandoned by an artist in hurry or forced to a certain form of efficiency in painting. The canvas bears marks of every event, sometime anodyne, occurring during the creative process in order to analyses the “sudden breaks” in the act of painting, these moments where the artwork ends. Some white areas appear here and there, witnessing the time lapse between two work sessions where the slide projector has moved slightly. The multiple projections and the cut up principle enlighten the secret of the workshop, the margins of creation. The artist talks about “a painting which stops before the edge, the end of the canvas, and then starts again, nearly itself again or at least in a relationship with itself.”

A very complex character, Michel Castaignet applies the principle of OuLiPo (acronym for the French Literary movement; the workshop of potential literature) to his paintings and multiplies the constraints. His very strict device resting on a system comparable to the definition/methods of Claude Ruthault, nevertheless creates a painting that is very open to interpretation. The artist sees in these compositions a mean to reconcile his taste for formalism and rigor with his taste for a baroque and colourful universe.

Michel Castaignet echoes a society marked by plagiarism and theoretical simplifications, in a permanent search for democratization of art and culture. A society where the artistic concepts are transformed into mere variations, where the multiplication of sources, the anonymity of the reproduced image creates every day a little more of an “opacity which prevents the public from producing knowledge” according to the essayist Edouard Glissant.

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Chaput Cécile - Flat Burst #33

Flat Burst #33

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Chaput Cécile

Chaput Cécile

Cécile Chaput was born in 1988 in Strasbourg, she lives and works in Paris.

Graduate from l'Ecole nationale supérieure des Beaux Arts de Paris and from the Universität der Künst (Berlin), Cécile Chaput dismembers and recomposes deconstructed kitchens, formed mainly of fragmented elements of Formica. Forging a special relationship with this material, literally putting into perspective this material, she focuses on it to reveal its unsuspected power. Real "madeleine de Proust", it makes remind in each one memories of past emotions : shared moments in a family kitchen, a favorite bar, the charm of an old-fashioned restaurant ... In this visual origami, the viewer is struck by the emotional burden carried by these fragmented compositions
 

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Chauvel Claire - Forêt de Mare-Longue, St Philippe

Forêt de Mare-Longue, St Philippe

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Chauvel Claire

Chauvel Claire

Claire Chauvel was born in 1986. She lives and works inthe east of France.

« […] The difficulty in seizing the image for good and the mistery of nature nourish Claire Chauvel's pictorial quest. The search for a rythm enables to eventually establish a connexion with nature, at the point where thoughts vanish. The artist is searching for something like a fundamental beat, approached with a touch that is rarely serene and a relentless effort to strip the landscape from whatever hides it. But the quest is infinite: a blind spot always remains, which requires the territorialization to go on, on the inside as well as on the outside. » Anne Malherbe

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Chrétien Manolo - NY Citillusion 10

NY Citillusion 10

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Chrétien Manolo

Chrétien Manolo

Manolo Chretien was born in 1966. He lives and works in France. He grew up amongst hangars, tarmac, kerosene, rivets and the aluminum skins of jet prototypes that his father, France’s first Astronaut, would one day pilot, a universe where Manolo developed his passion for the design and technology power, coexisting with industrial structures, metallic surfaces and infinite detail.
Since childhood he has been attracted by close up details of « skins » : aluminum planes , wooden and metal boats, cargo trucks, cars, and a myriad of surfaces altered by time’s passing, revealing an object’s soul.
Over the last twenty years, Manolo has travelled worldwide with one goal : feeling the heart and pulse of places, by capturing the skins of all surfaces distorted by time, wind, erosion…
Manolo, through his photographic perception in "behind his skins", drives us back into a material’s past, like bearing witness to our captivating world's history, believing/acknowledging that everything is ephemeral yet some great moments deserve to be captured by photography.

 

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Class Marine

Class Marine

Graduated from l'Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris in 2007, Marine Class lives in  Nantes and works in La Chapelle-Basse-Mer.

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Crépieux Julien - Up_And_Downloading_Sasha

Up_And_Downloading_Sasha

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Crépieux Julien

Crépieux Julien

Julien Crépieux was born in 1979. He lives and works in Paris. Graduated from L’Ecole des Beaux Arts de Montpellier (France), his work was shown in several exhibitions in France and abroad.

Whether making films, installations, or collages, Julien Crépieux's work proposes original devices through the appropriation of images, films, texts, and music, of which he twists the modes of appearance, giving rise to works marked with a  formal as well as poetical dimension.  

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