Painting CutOuts, One Man Show by Julien Gardair,Diana Lowenstein Gallery,Miami April 15- May 28 2016
As the title suggests, the Painting-Cutout series combine, for the first time, two major practices of my work—painting and cutting. I begin by painting heavy cotton rag papers on both sides with diverse playful experimentations: brushing, stenciling, masking, stamping, spraying, projecting, soaking, monotyping, dripping… Each action or procedure brings with it its own aspects of meaning, genre, and lineage. From the most direct techniques to the most remote ones, all reveal a strong physical presence rich in details. The results of this creative play vary from monochromatic to prismatic, loosely gestural to photographic, and from abstract to figurative.
Beginning the next phase I then select, from the ever growing stack of painted papers, four sheets which I fold in half and bind together in a book like form. Once bound, I cut the first painting freehand with a sharp blade, beginning at the outside edge and ending at the center fold. Nothing is removed; the cut reveals and obstructs parts of the image at the same time, still maintaining the symmetry of the book. Page after page I follow a similar process, the composition of the painting/book is constructed in this specific space between the layers. It is a process where my own gaze is obstructed by the pages and the overlapping content, so that only so much can be planned and only so much will be discovered at any given moment.
The production of these objects creates no waste and requires enacting a sort of memory game to recall what it is hidden in between and underneath as I act upon the visible surfaces. In the final presentation the “book” is opened to the last page and hung horizontally; whereupon the piece reveals itself as an intricate layered relief of 7 paintings, once antagonistic, now reconciled into one form.