FRAC Normandie Rouen

FRAC Normandie | 3, Place des Martyrs de la Resistance, Sotteville-lès-Rouen
F-76300 Rouen

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press release

Elodie Lesourd. Lambda Pictoris
19.01.2019 . 05.05.2019

Artist's talk: January 19, 2:30–4pm

After a number of solo exhibitions devoted to photographers, this year the Fonds Régional d’Art Contemporain (Frac) Normandie Rouen is giving free rein to a painter, Élodie Lesourd. This retrospective project, entitled Lambda Pictoris, mixes recent work with earlier paintings, as part of a vast in situ installation. It provides an insight into the artist’s trans-pictorial work, nourished by both conceptual art and geometric abstraction, and drawing its sources from music.

French artist Élodie Lesourd (born in 1978) trained at the Beaux-arts in Lyon and Nantes. Her terms of reference take in equally the history of art and music (including extreme genres such as Black Metal), to test the limits of representation and meaning within her painting. Her artistic practice tends to be guided by two formally distinct orientations. A first body of work, referred to as “hyperrockalist,” is characterised by reappropriating, in a hyperrealist style, views of contemporary artists’ installations that refer to the same musical currents.

In defining this rigorous method, Élodie Lesourd probes the ability of art to elicit a supplemental reality. By selecting high chromatic density photographs, from coloured and monochrome flat tints, she brings out the perceptible and almost abstract dimension of these works, despite their faithful representation. Another part of her work, which uses abstraction and telescoping, looks at isolating the various of communication media components from these musical fields, from disc jackets to stickers, in order to rework them in original compositions, in which the point of reference is identifiable only in the title. More than just a formal game, this image deconstruction enables her to prompt an exploration of the nature of these signs.

For her Lambda Pictoris exhibition at the Frac, both typologies of works are represented in exploded chronological order, in which overview takes precedence over linearity. Although his scrupulously realistic display of hyperrockalist paintings contrasts with the abstraction and fragmentation of the works inscribed on a semiological axis, this formal division dissolves in the context of the exhibition. A large immersive mural, in the form of a fragmented star, becomes the framework for these dualistic works. The use of an all-over approach, via a visual immersion effect, suggests sound saturation in an attempt at synaesthesia. The work as a whole, designed like a musical score, produces a wide range of sounds, in which each piece contributes to a more comprehensive exploration of time, from the finite to the infinite. For Élodie Lesourd, the exhibition thus becomes an opportunity to produce a work close to a form of total art, which reveals fully the installation and intertextual dimension of her work.

The exhibition title, Lambda Pictoris, from the name of a star in the painter’s constellation, thus refers to the mural and to the cosmological nature of Élodie Lesourd’s work, which is traversed by references and ramifications between the visual arts.

To give this pictorial circuit a musical echo, Élodie Lesourd has been invited by the 106—Scène des Musiques Actuelles de Rouen—to organise a one-day festival on the musical movements that run through her work.

Director: Véronique Souben