It all starts with a story, the one of Karen, Alpha, Hamilton, Alice, Maxime and Clément. These stories become ours as soon as we hear the first words echoing in the room. The paintings reveal the portrait of each of these personalities who bring us, step by step, into their intimate utopias ; the story of their representations. They become "models", the main referents of a series with an evocative title : The New Classics.
Above all, this project is a story of encounters and friendships that the artist crystallizes on canvas by sublimating the identity impulses of those around him. In a very singular exhibition device, confessions reach us on both sides of the paintings. The artist shares with us the feelings and dreams confessed by each and everyone, thanks to these recordings of a few minutes. We discover the environment chosen and imagined freely by each model that the artist depicts: their native village, the city, a wasteland, home, or somewhere in the cosmos ... We hear them describe with precision, element by element, the place they imagine, an ideal situation, sometimes echoing their past, their present, or their future. Each of these environments is then punctuated with symbols linked to their personality, their experience but also their fantasies. Our gaze roams on the canvas in search of the elements scattered in these scenes, as a way of inviting us to participate. It is up to the spectators to listen carefully to these stories, ready to be heard, and to seize these moments when they discover the works.
This intimate dialogue leads to a scene obviously reminiscent of the pictorial portraits commissioned by the wealthy classes to establish their reputation and social standing. Jérémie Danon takes up these traditional codes brought up to date: everyone can claim to be a work of art. The possible realities are sublimated by their fantasies, allowing an affirmation of their identities. The words are accurate, sincere and more than a sharing, they become real scenes, highlighted, where visitors are inevitably immersed, as in a movie theater.
By shifting the codes of the documentary on painting, enhanced by a sound installation, Jérémie Danon appropriates these same codes to create his own language and present in an original way the narrative of these stories, that he edits like a film. This singular approach is also found in the choice of mediums, where painting is mixed with the 3D decor that artist and models create together. This assembly is close, paradoxically, to a video without movement, as if the film had been stopped to focus on a single shot. This bias affirms in a certain way the gesture of the artist; in turn, Jérémie Danon reinforces his aesthetic and plastic identity to continue to surprise us.
In the same way that a contract of trust exists between the artist and his models, it is between the spectators and the animated paintings that something happens. We, as the spectator, are called out for a moment. Each of the six protagonists confess to us their stories and open their hearts without limit or restraint to expose their visions of success, reveal who they really are, or express their strongest desires. Their doubts are brought to the sight of all, as a way to become aware of them and to accept them. These personal stories move from the context of a one-on-one meeting to the public space to open up to a larger audience, transmitting, somehow, a shared identity. They resonate with our own personal stories, our referents; although all different, everyone can seize them and make them their own.
Text and curation: Miléna Chevillard & Maxime Bourron