Stéphane Erouane Dumas ‘Septentrion’ at Galerie Pierre-Alain Challier Paris
A new solo exhibition by Stéphane Erouane Dumas consisting of approximately fifty
works – oils on canvas and paper as well as a dozen sculptures – it’s an opportunity to celebrate the representation of the plant and mineral world, fundamental themes in artist’s work.
Each piece of work possesses its own dynamic, never tiring, perceptible as it vibrates under the gaze. Birch trees and cliffs, as true ‘breathing lungs’, inseparable subjects from his work as a draftsman-painter-sculptor, emerge in a new range of colors that blend pale pink or celadon green.
An ‘artistically captivating’ nature is how Stéphane Erouane Dumas defines what the generous nature offers him and from which he draws inspiration, especially in Normandy, in his studio in Varengeville-sur-Mer, a village of artists made famous by Claude Monet or Georges Braque. The alabaster coast embodies the ideal place where he can engage with the verticality of the cliffs that dot the landscape and the forests in which he can immerse himself, abundant with inspiring essences,
such as birch trees.
‘For several years, I’ve multiplied representations of birch trees. I see in their bark a mineral aesthetic similar to that of cliffs: a chalky white punctuated by black spots akin to flint nodules anchored in the rock. I extract from nature a vocabulary of shapes and colors. Whatever the motif, I transform it, enlarge it, reduce it, and multiply it without ever making it disappear, to give it more power, so that it can tell something else.
And when he feels the need to include lakes or other elements in his paintings that he doesn’t find on-site – neither in his Parisian studio nor in his Norman studio – he doesn’t hesitate to draw from his notebooks that have accompanied him during his various travels in Northern Europe – Norway, Finland, Lapland, Iceland… The artist conceives a contemplative work, a kind of hypnotic meditation sublimated by the emotion it generates both visually and mentally, erasing the boundaries between figuration and abstraction in passing.
‘I take the vocabulary of nature to go elsewhere’, states Stéphane Erouane Dumas, effectively dragging the viewer in his wake.