A painting of the plural singular
“Gaëtan de Séguin paints crowds. His crowds are made up with a multitude of silhouettes, all of them almost identical but also singular. Beings who, by the action of the painting itself, become patterns. Recurrent, haunting, swarming, building a new life, a new being.
Sometimes the silhouette, peculiar and mute, escapes from the crowd but never finds its salvation. On its own, passing by its keens without ever comprehending them.
Multitude and unique, anonymity and privacy, silence and noise. There is a bit of all this gathering into Gaëtan’s painting, a painting of the plural singular.”
When the group reveals individuals
“Gaëtan de Séguin casts roles to his anonymous characters, like he would to the extras in a major scene. Now and then some of them break away but only to pass by. Each silhouette reveals itself essential to the balance and harmony of the whole. The artist offers us different perspectives. He invites us to alternatively focus on and off so as to discover either the details of the materials or the whole of his compositions. His colorful and subtle palette fades away behind the pattern. The shades come to life when he uses scratching effects. Hidden scratches then surface in spite of the successive coats. Gaëtan de Séguin’s painting is all about reserve and shades. It keeps questioning the individuals and his place into the greater scheme.”
I have always been the one who draws and the one who draws “blokes”.
As soon as I lay hand on anything I can draw on, I cover it up with silhouettes. In 40 years of time, I became responsible for a great bestiary!
Each working session in my workshop gives birth to a humankind constituted of individuals who interact as much as they ignore each other. All of them are wild and wise at the same time, creative and vain. As far as I offer to anyone the possibility to invent my characters’ own stories, my painting is decisively of a figurative type.
A thread, if need be…
… January 2015’s events for instance… I immediately wanted my characters to gather and spread out of the canvas.
Crowds… Be they dense or sparse, joyful, humble, silent or roaring, moving or obnoxious, etc…
Their physical appearance does not matter. It is the combination of their convictions that tinctures the whole group. This is what I am currently working on in my latest series “J+…”.
I cover my canvas with a dominant, very dense, almost garish coat. This undercoat subsequently gets entirely covered. The general shade lightens up and the color scheme fades into a monochrome of grey. At this stage I can start painting, adding or extracting substance. The music I listen to imposes the rhythm for the group to pop up.
Scratching with the most various tools, I can paint with all kinds of brushes.
Each scratch represents a unique pattern which characterizes the individual as much as it offers him the possibility to melt into a much broader and abstract dimension.