Oil paint stick, pastel and gesso on magazine page mounted on paper
39,5 × 32 cm
Elle #1, Elle #5, Elle #6, Elle #7, Elle #8, Elle #9, Elle #10, Elle #11
Monstrous figure - 2015/2020
Either as a sick, degenerate or adapted body, the monstrous is usually used as a symbol of what is to be fought, and more rarely of that which has survived. Whether it serves as a possible symbolic projection (as in the work by Jim Shaw, Mike Kelley and Kiki Kogelnik) or as a means of expressing the experience of limits (in the work of Tetsumi Kudo, Monster Chetwynd or Alina Szapocznikow), the monstrosity can also be interpreted as a new figure of the anti-hero, an alternative to the authority of the healthy and the dignified, and one that destroys moral values in its path and opens the door to the rawest of alterity. The monster is the ultimate being of the end needed for a possible renewal.
The idea of the “monstrous” is part of my current research; the forms and figures that embody it, which have become unidentifiable (distorted or damaged body, blob, fog or ectoplasm), have exceeded the limits of the nommable and of language. For the same reasons, the movement of waves and fluids is one of the recurring patterns in my iconography, as are the stains, waste or shapeless mounds, all used for their abilities to evoke multiple visual projections as much as for the mobility of their shifting identity. These dirty forms, unsuitable for the gaze or for representation, enable the hierarchy of images (and values) to be shaken up and rethought, especially the portrait.
The drawings and paintings from the series Elle, made on magazine pages or cardboard advertising materials typically promoting a cosmetic product, are the first works to express these recent issues. By isolating the hair or the eyes, covering the rest with a thick pastel that is not unlike make-up, I modify these images to make reflective surfaces that avoid the promise of an ideal of good taste.