Painting as an evanescence, a breath, a murmur, a memory, an apparition… It is such a florescence, a germination or a flux that, in its flows of blue, yellow, and pale roses, the painting of Simon Martin appears to us.
“Here and there, repentances and drips, sub-layers and contours are left visible,” says Horya Makhlouf, the curator of the artist’s exhibition, who sees the transmutation of “the matter of dreams and memories.” “Born from the seeds they left before they vanished, Simon Martin’s painting makes them sprout into perennial buds…” Roses have grown in the joints of the tile… The paint is flaking and the water is pouring down the cement… the titles attest. They also let us glimpse the flaw, the strangeness interfering in reality, a reality seeming to liquefy in the water of the watercolor and the pallor of oil mixed with acrylic spreading in this “garden of painting.”
Peopled with evanescent faces, bodies, and flowers, ghosts, flush on canvas or paper like floating bodies or apparitions, the world of pastel colors of Simon Martin indeed seems closer to the universe of dreams.
The smoke of memories was mixed by the painter with pigments and oil. It is the real material. It is palpable, malleable, coated on the canvas, layer after layer, to make resurface, even better than the images, the feelings that accompanied them,” writes Horya Makhlouf.
Miraculously, tiny chromatic variations, ranging from blue to green washed down to purple, bodies and flowers like shadows, such as mirages, threaten to disappear at any time.
Here, two faces lying barely perceptible, float between the horizon line, one, hemmed by the sea, the other, shrouded in purple fog, as if rising from the mist… There, Hollyhocks rise out of nowhere, as if incomplete… here, two faces in a mirror, almost elusive, halfway between appearance and disappearance, burial and incompletion… There, a diaphanous blue Phantom emerges from a faded pink background. Playing with voids and transparencies by subtle overlaps and shadings, Simon Martin manages to make the atmosphere of daydreams sweaty.
In places lacunary, like memories, his painting, all of clarity and lightness, seems to be only a murmur and wanting, through the chalky hues of his deaf palette, to remind us of happy days.
Born in 1992 in Vitry-sur-Seine, a graduate of the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris, Simon Martin lives and works in Paris. His work is currently presented in the collective exhibition Les Immortelles at MO.CO in Montpellier, and Voir en peinture, la jeune figuration en France, curated by Anne Dary, at the Musée des Sables d’Olonnes.
SIMON MARTIN – Sleeping under the petals
Jousse Entreprise Gallery
6, rue Saint-Claude, Paris III
Until May 13