This is why I ask viewers who visit my workshop to give a title to any of the paintings. Sometimes I keep the title if I find it particularly evocative and poetic.
For example, The Case of Charles Dexter Ward was a title given by a friend (Michèle Lefebvre, 1984) because the ambience of the painting reminded her of the novella by Lovecraft.
Rarely do I title a painting myself. Exceptions include Os avec rébus dans la nuit (Bone with Rebus in the Night), Toiles d’hiver en désir de printemps (Winter Canvasses Desiring Spring), and Promontoire de l’oubli (Promontory of Oblivion).
Each untitled canvas is waiting to be named. Any ideas you’d like to share? If so, submit your titles to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will give you a yea or nay.
* Abstract figures:
Art history has contrasted Figure and Abstraction, however the era of formalism proved that figures could also be abstract, with each artist specializing in the iteration of a single figure (Barnett Newman, Albers, Pollock, Buren, BMPT, Fontana, etc.) or a single color (Soulages, Ryman, Klein, etc.).
The word "figure" supposes two terms: what is figurative and what appears. As such, "figure" contains a symbolic meaning that formalist painting generally refuses.
To call them figures is, therefore, to replenish them with a symbolic meaning and to incorporate them into a vocabulary of signs (in a tradition that goes back to Kandinsky and, through him, to Goethe's treatise on colors). In this way, this approach to painting revisits the achievements of the 20th century.
* Contemporary Art and Modern Art :
Modern art critics are not fond of artists who are eclectic, that is, who use different practices, often accusing them of dilettantism. Contemporary art, however, isn't reduced to the object (painting, video, performance, documentary elements about the work, various writings, etc.). It's the expression of an abstract concept that constitutes the true work. There is a redefinition of art and artist: artists are no longer confined to one practice, allowing them to explore many techniques which find their coherence in a unifying discourse.
My work doesn't play on the sensationalism or scandal that, according to the paradigm of contemporary art (cf. Nathalie Heinich), one may expect. It is presented as a resistance to art which has cut all ties with the audience and which, in its frenzied haste to be merely a comment about art, loses sight of what is profoundly human.
The shared concept of my painting, videos, performances and novels is the questioning of being and becoming, in what Umberto Eco names an open work (opera aperta, The Open Work, 1962).1
1 Where the ambiguity and the plurality of the signified is an explicit aim: the work can be interpreted in different ways without its irreducible singularity being altered.