Artist: Nathalie Du Pasquier
Venue: La Loge, Brussels
Exhibition Title: From Some Paintings
Date: February 16 – April 22, 2017
Full gallery of images, press release and link available after the jump.
Images courtesy of and copyright the artist and La Loge, Brussels
Over the past thirty-five years, Nathalie Du Pasquier has experimented with the arrangement, organisation and composition of form and colour, paying particular attention to the divide between objects and their representation. The artist’s understanding of space in relation to objects originates from her experience as one of the founding members of Memphis, the prominent Milanese design and architecture collective launched by Ettore Sottsass in 1980. Influenced by postmodern style (bending rules and playing with commonplace forms) Du Pasquier developed a unique aesthetic resulting in her famous graphic patterns for decorated surfaces. Although in 1987 Du Pasquier decided to shift her focus from design to painting, her whole artistic practice can be seen as a continuous and organic elaboration of shape and form.
Using objects found in her studio, Nathalie Du Pasquier first approached painting through the prism of the ubiquitous still life genre. Since this period in the late 1980s and early 1990s, her work has gradually taken on a more abstract form: for many paintings Du Pasquier has replaced her models (cups, bottles, and mugs, among many other things) with handmade wooden constructions.Over the last couple of years Du Pasquier has continued to paint still lifes, but from a renewed point of view. In translating the logic of assembled objects to painted form, the artist now focuses on the formal qualities of painting, rather than its capacity to represent. Often imaginary, her work plays with the ambiguity between flat surfaces and three-dimensional constructions
At La Loge, Nathalie Du Pasquier and Luca Lo Pinto invite the viewer to engage with a new body of work, which reprises many elements of the artist’s former research and stems from her unceasing investigation into assemblages of form. Presented in the basement is a series of black and white photographic representations of still lifes originally executed in oil between 2000 and 2010. Each image is printed on an A4 format and then aligned like stills from a black and white silent film, denoting a different temporal experience. On the first floor, in the Temple, the artist presents an in situ installation comprising a wooden construction and six flat compositions linking the floor and panels on the wall like freestanding columns or totems. The compositions combine cut-outs of enlarged details taken from some of the black and white works on view on the lower floor with sheets of coloured paper and digital elaborations of more recent abstract paintings. The compositions are indeed an amalgamation, borrowing from some paintings, and it was this process, which inspired the title of the show.
In the artist’s own words: “There are several reasons for this work. As we were choosing the pieces for the Kunsthalle Wien exhibition of last year, Luca and I realised that during the long period covered by that show (35 years), there is an almost continuous elaboration of elements that little by little have emerged. They become like raw material and are recomposed in new pieces. From some paintings plays with that idea and pushes it further. At La Loge, we won’t use the original works but only documents: photos and computer elaborations. We want to present a new work made of older ones and devoid of material value. What a relief to imagine an exhibition made of paper, with no insurance! There will only be one three-dimensional piece made of “boxes”, that piece will be constructed in situ and covered with paper. Another aspect that we found intriguing was the possibility to translate the originally coloured oil paintings into black and white. To see them in black and white forces us to seek harmony somewhere else.” Offering a frame for reflection and experimentation in the work of artists and encouraging dialogue with its specific architecture, La Loge welcomes Nathalie Du Pasquier’s reflection on a life-long career in the form of a new, unexpected body of work.
Nathalie Du Pasquier (°1957, born in Bordeaux, lives and works in Milan). Until 1986, Du Pasquier worked as a designer and was a founding member of the influential design group Memphis. She designed numerous textiles, carpets, plastic laminates, and some furniture and objects. In 1987 painting became her main activity. Recent solo exhibitions include Nathalie Du Pasquier. Big objects not always silent, Kunsthalle Wien (2016)); Meteorites & Constructions II, Exile, Berlin (2016); The big game, Exile, Berlin (2015); Cultura materiale curated by Elisa Langlois and Pierre Leguillon, Haute Ecole d’Art et de Design, Genève (2015), and Quadri mobili e immobili at A Palazzo Gallery, Brescia (2016).
Luca Lo Pinto (°1981, lives and works between Wien and Rome) is an editor and curator. He is one of the founders of NERO magazine and publishing house and, since 2014, he is curator of Kunsthalle Wien. Exhibitions he has curated include Nathalie Du Pasquier. Big objects not always silent, Kunsthalle Wien (2016); Charlemagne Palestine GesammttkkunnsttMeshuggahhLaandtttt, Kunsthalle Wien (2015); Le Regole del Gioco, Achille Castiglioni Studio-Museum (2015); Pierre Bismuth-Der Kurator, der Anwalt und der Psychoanalytiker, Kunsthalle Wien (2015); Trapped in the closet, Bibliothèque Carnegie /FRAC Champagne Ardenne (2014); In Real Life, Christine Konig Galerie (2014); Luigi Ontani-AnderSennoSogno, H.C. Andersen Museum (2013); Antigrazioso, Palais de Toyko (2013); D’après Giorgio, Giorgio e Isa de Chirico Foundation (2012).