Frédérique Lucien’s “Corps et décors” at the Matisse Museum
#NICE Far from the angular lines and coloured strata of Cézanne, turning away from Van Gogh’s living matter in a quest for the same essence of the world that painting would reveal, Matisse more humbly, and as we know, originally without a particular appetite for art, initiated a solitary path that many other artists followed in its wake. Frédérique Lucien unrolls in the Matisse Museum in Nice, the sons of his filiation to the Master and those he influenced, Hantaï, Shirley Jaffe, the artists of Support-Surface and many others. He needs the same humility to walk in the painter’s footsteps, both in the evidence of his contribution and in making the seeds he had sown hatch here.
“Body and decoration” thus gives rise to the bodily dimension which, apparently, for the painter was reduced to a motif and a circular organization to give rhythm to many compositions of a luminous work. Frédérique Lucien then took hold of the elements of the Matissian decor, arabesques and plants, to express them in their relationship to this decorative body that she interpreted in the twists and turns of drawing, enamelled porcelain and other materials. But this artist, in about fifty pieces, also traces the stations of the history of a work that is given in fragments, cuts and large volumes of colour. Not to complete Matisse’s work but rather to extract from it what the painter, in his relationship to decoration, light and monumentality, made invisible.
It is no longer so much a dialogue with the artist as an opportunity to give him a follow-up, but in the sense of a musical follow-up. Because cuts and tears of paper or flattened colours whose shapes resonate in the void of white or scattered on the walls of the museum, tune into the rhythm of a fugue that takes us away, certainly in Matisse’s footsteps, but above all in the desire that it implies: The ideal of perfection in a sincere agreement with the world. As if bodies and sets were woven, scratched or scattered like the moments of a dance, that of this union with the world so dear to the artist. The painting then becomes this jewel case of the body whose echo reaches us in the restitution of the harmonious power of Matisse. It matches the mineral and the vegetable, it reflects the quivering of nature. It is an achievement.
Until June 2, 2019
Frédérique Lucien, “Corps et décors”
164 Avenue des Arènes de Cimiez
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