La condition humaine
HS : Could you first introduce yourself to our readers?
LP : I was born in Los Angeles to an Italian-American family. I was driven toward an artistic practice from an early age; I do not have many memories from my childhood that do not involve creation of some sort. I was drawn right away to portraiture and figurative representation, and I began to draw the people that I saw around me. My curiosity led me to experiment with any two-dimensional drawing or painting medium I could get my hands on; my favorites were charcoal and watercolor. Initially on my career path I was inspired to go into book illustration, as I have always loved stories of any kind, as well as visually illustrating a story. Because of the harsh financial reality of being an artist, my career took me into graphic design, where I learned another realm of visual communication. To this day however, I have always felt the most artistic freedom in figurative painting, where the paintbrush allows me to tell another person’s story.
HS : Where and how do you find your inspiration?
LP : My inspiration comes from my subject: human beings. I am deeply intrigued by people, their nature and their stories. I have often been told this comes through in my work. For me, portraying another person visually requires almost the same level of intimacy as sitting down and having a personal conversation with them. After I have completed the work, I tend to feel as if I “know” them on a certain level, even if I have never physically met them before. I rarely portray the same subject twice because the very process of translating my impression of them into my two-dimensional representation is truly unique to each one.
I am most inspired by those who have had a different experience of life than I have; those who have struggled in their lives are by far the most intriguing to me. My artistic process is my way of getting into their head and finding out how they feel or perhaps why they behave the way they do. It seems that everyone has a story to tell, even if it is not immediately visible. Many of my watercolor paintings reflect examples of this: a young boy playing chess with an old man in a New York City park; a disconnected couple eating their dinner in silence at a restaurant; a homeless man eating out of a city dumpster; a couple’s quiet sidewalk conversation; people standing right next to the ocean during a violent hurricane. On a more provocative level, my “harlot” paintings, which depict prostitution and victims of human trafficking, attempt to tell stories that are perhaps even less visible.
HS : What were the motivations that drove you to painting, and at what point in time?
LP : I started drawing at a very young age, and after several years progressed to painting, so initially it was fairly instinctive. However, as I grew older and several other aspects of my life naturally attempted to intervene, I began to learn more about myself and my innermost motivations for painting. I began to realize what an expressive journey – and emotionally cathartic experience – my artistic practice had become for me. The completion of each painting entails a deep level of focus, but it requires an even deeper level of emotional vulnerability. As a result, my artistic practice has truly become intrinsic to my very being.
La condition humaineText: Laura Persat
Site : missfoghorn.com
Vernissage : jeudi 29 novembre 2018 dès 18h
Exposition : jeudi 29 nov. 2018 à vendredi 25 jan. 2019
Galerie ELA, Cafétéria des Bâtiments EL , ELA 010
Curatrice : Homeira Sunderland
Information : astie.epfl.ch ou 021 693 28 23
Last modification : 12h42, vendredi le 8 février, 2019