These objects are an attempt to express the virtues and vices , the happiness and unhappiness of human beings giving them a statue. For this purpose I use wavecardboard I paint it aftherwards and so it gets its presence.
In 2003, I was prompted to seek out the superbly original natural environment that Gauguin had depicted in his work to see if the same beauty was still in evidence in the region and in the villages and locations he had stayed and worked in at that time. The central point in all this was the town of Pont d’Aven where, at the end of the 19th century, a group of Americans arrived and went onto form a famous group. Given that, at that point, Brittany was completely closed off and had remained in a very original, isolated condition, it attracted a great many artists who even came from Paris.
I decided to explore the area and have to admit that it is still a fascinating region. Breton idiosyncrasies are still very much in evidence today and the surroundings are still peppered with desolate and unusual natural environments.
Given the fact that I found a house in the vicinity of a small, uninhabited island (the archipelago Les Iles de Glénan is not that far away) which was subject to the influence of the tides on a daily basis, I was able to find some quite unbelievable rock constructions, in every imaginable colour and size: rough and polished stones, coloured by moss and lichen, in a vast array of shapes and formations, which stimulated the imagination and forced a sense of creativity. The coves, rivulets, kelp formations, seeds, mussel banks and seaweed changed on a daily basis and I also photographed the exceptional, small plants in order to record them for posterity. It was an unparalleled, constantly changing, spectacular world and I felt as though I was sauntering across a strange planet. The stones, with their vast array of shapes, seemed to be speaking a different language and I began to see human forms in them; I couldn’t just leave them be, I had to take a few with me. Most of them were stunning, sculptures with genuine significance, and, after a while, I began to select a few. I managed to collect several stones, of a manageable size, which formed astonishing shapes and in which I could see an image. In my studio, I began to paint what they were saying to me, to pick out the notions they were suggesting and even to combine formations.
These small sculptures are the results of this work.
© G. Cleuren 2012