Hong Kong exhibition. To The Rain by Lionel Esteve at Galerie Perrotin (50 Connaught Road Central 17th floor. Hong Kong). From January 18 to March 2, 2013
To the Rain. A wet image… It’s always after the event that I understand the deeper meaning of my work. Not that automatic writing is involved here: my intentions are clear, but with time it has occurred me that I make work for reasons that are different from what I imagined. Maybe it’s better that way.
Today, it occurs to me that the common feature of the works shown at Galerie Perrotin in Hong Kong is an idea of landscape. They are often totally abstract, as in what I elliptically call the “fringed drawings.” These consist of about ten painted and worked sheets layered on top of each other, then cut and set out so as to form a bas-relief. What is then shown is chaotic images with an overload of information which could be an illustration of the theory of parallel worlds, a kind of schizophrenic landscape. Visually just as disorienting, two columns of painted organza silk hang from the ceiling. The colours of this celestial landscape combine in a vibrant moiré effect. Visitors can also enter into it, as if entering a cabin. At the foot of the columns there is a small expanse of stones, half covered with colour, the trace of flooding, or perhaps a waterline when stones were immersed in liquid. And, to complete the description of the works on show, other stones, whose surfaces are embroidered with thread glimmer like minerals coated with some strange dew.
Different ideas of landscape exist in each of these works. Sometimes, all that remains is the undulation of light (that of the evening, of a foggy night, etc.), a décor made up of miniature islands where storms threaten. These landscapes are in the water, either by virtue of their creation or by what they evoke. Just as some artists have tried to depict music in their paintings, so here I have tried, among other things, to represent the state of wetness. Like the rest of my work, these pieces were made with the desire to achieve maximum anonymity, as regards to gender, period, nationality or place. Maybe they’ll feel at home in Hong Kong. Lionel Estève
View also: http://www.perrotin.com/