Dominique Figarella, french artist born in 1966, proposes his second solo show at gallery anne barrault. Committed to his demanding painting while working for cross-disciplinary projects, he recently has worked with Mathilde Monnier, a choreographer, to create Soapéra, shown in Centre Pompidou in Paris last spring. From dance to painting, this artwork illustrates the artist interest for the creative process and the issue of temporality in paint composition. In his recent paintings, with the same principle, he incorporates photographs of the painting in the making, raising the question of the relationship between each of these mediums and reality.
“To have a vision of the world, to practise this vision, means to make a link in the production of images
we project on it.”
With Dominique Figarella, a painting belongs to a device of which the viewer constitutes another most important part. In the “white cube”, the gallery itself, the painting is the womb of this experience lived by several people. If the painting, as an object, conveys the artist’s emotion and, at the same time, the craftsman’s freedom, what makes sense is definitely the interaction between this object, in a place, through the eyes of the spectator. Dominique Figarella’s work is like a drama, necessarily incomplete: the choice of the staging and the reception of the audience give it its actual dimension.
The painting is also thought, at the same time, as the receiver and the expression of materials, techniques, and mediums being tested and explored. If the frame is still orthogonal, it is in order to dynamite its limits all the more. We have already come across chewing gums, tennis balls, plaster, monochromes on aluminium, textiles, Perspex...in the artist’s work. “I make use of any kind of material, according to what the painting demands”: these words by Kurt Schwitters enlighten perfectly well Dominique Figarella’ approach. Everything can be integrated into the creative process in order to arouse emotion.
In a photo print integrated into the work, sometimes the legs of a human figure carrying the painting, in a skilful effect of mise en abyme, can be seen. A travesty of a self-portrait? A veiled message from the artist/craftsman? The set of the making? Maybe all this at the same time. The works, untitled on purpose, are offered and shared with those who come across them. Everyone can readily enjoy the precious freedom of “having and using his own vision of the world”, as the artist puts it.
Dominique Figarella likes the idea that the abstraction of his paintings is about nothing. This exhibition, like the rest of his work, is an opening on to this negativity, which concerns all of us. In that respect, his work is universal.