With scalpel in hand, the explorer artist patiently scratches the fine layers of chalk paint on the surface of the plexiglass. Looking at the dark material, he wonders: “What will emerge through the fog?” Each step reveals the elements of a hidden landscape, a fleeting but frozen-in-time glance of a phantasmagorical world. Pondering the Inevitable is Pierre Barraud de Lagerie’s first solo exhibition, and the viewer has the unique opportunity to look back at the thematic evolution of his peculiar technique. Pierre combines scratchboard on chalk paint with his many years in the theatre as lighting and sound technician, as well as his experience in music. As is common in theatre, light is used in the artist’s work to convey emotions and meanings. The complex texture and varying light intensities are due to the chalk paint which consists of many layers that allow the rich gray tones to be processed according to the degree of scraping. Additionally, crucial to the shaping of the artwork is the spirit of improvisation, which emanates from music. Starting with a remote initial idea – which may eventually be overturned – Pierre does not know in advance where exactly the scalpel will lead him to. Through the artist’s stoic gaze the spectator is able to observe two time periods. The first is dominated by desolate landscapes of imposing architecture with passages leading to unknown destinations. In the second period, life forms emerge: birds, griffins and people in a setting of temples and enigmatic buildings that refer to lost empires and worship of forgotten gods. An Olympian calm prevails in the intensely ritualistic atmosphere. The artist ponders how something so elaborate that took centuries to be built can disappear in a moment. The notion of inevitability – that is awe-inspiring to the artist – permeates all his work and gives the impression of a mystical union between the two great irreconcilable opposites of the human drama: transience and eternity.
Pierre Barraud de Lagerie was born in 1987 in Le Havre, Normandy, France. He studied theater, music and sound, mainly in Paris, and worked for many years as a technician in concert halls, theaters, festivals and recording studios. He started drawing in 2012 using black Indian ink. He participated in group exhibitions in France. In 2017-2018, tired of his life and work in Paris, he began to think of another country to live in. He discovered Rebetiko music in early 2018 and started learning bouzouki. Since then he has been living in Greece devoting his time exclusively to painting and music. In Greece he discovered his current painting technique. He participated in the group exhibition “Gods in Exile” at Melanithros art space. [Biography updated on: 1/1/2020]
Duration: 10/1/2020 – 25/1/2020