THE CARRION, THE CHARADE, a proposal by Double Séjour with Julian Farade & Sophie Lourdes Knight. From 5 to 30 may.
Double Séjour invites Julian Farade, a self-taught artist who explores human emotions and creates a world inhabited by animal and imaginary creatures, and Sophie Lourdes Knight, a Californian artist based in London who exhibits for the first time in France, for a duo show, “The Carrion, the Charade”, curated by Thomas Havet, from May 5 to May 30, 2021.
The exhibition can be seen on appointment, in conformity with preventive measures, from Wednesday to Saturday, from 3 to 7 p.m.
Make an appointment: https://calendly.com/doublesejour/lacharognelacharade
Letter to whoever will read
I am writing this text before the start of exhibition; I am trying to bring it to life with words, but your time (you who are reading this text) differs from mine. I am unable to know – here, now – what the exhibition will look like. I have a few clues, including the title found by curator Thomas Havet – “The Carrion, the Charade” – and some of the works that will be presented. So I imagine the exhibition – which you are walking through right now – like a dimly lit night (like a charade) with few “explicative” texts, except for this one (but unfortunately, it will not explain much). The exhibition is primarily a game, and thi
s text also plays the role of the “exhibition text presented at the entrance of the gallery”. I imagine (because I can only imagine) a particular resonance between the works of Julian Farade and Sophie Lourdes Knight; this text will begin with their differences and will drift toward what they have in common.
Julian, I read a text on your work that someone sent me, by the curator Victoria Aresheva. It used phrases like “primitive figurative languages”, “exotic landscapes”, it spoke of human desires and impulses, of
the human drama behind your paintings or pastels. Your works, in my opinion, have nothing to do with all this (with this vision of modernity that remains very Western-centric). No drama in your work – as I see it -, but an effervescence of light, lines, electric colors, desires without secrets. Signs and shapes (always curved, never angular) that tell very little.
Maybe an opaque mythology, but one that hides nothing, like a charade. Everything on the same level, a sort of graffiti of light, sometimes sexes (maybe), but no esotericism or hidden meaning. Of course, there are inspirations (have we mentioned Basquiat?), maybe one can see forms of processions. I think that your bas-reliefs will be (are) shown in the exhibition. One can think of Gauguin, but here again, no symbolism
. You haven’t gone away to search for something elsewhere.
Everything is here, on the canvas, nothing behind.
This might not be the case for your works, Sophie; they seem to compose a theater of painting. Signs or symbols often function in pairs, they are like masked couples. In one painting: a drawing of hands and a window, in another, a hand and a fish. Pairs or symbols are repeated to compose a dramaturgy of the image, where reality always appears as a form of “mascherata” (masquerade) – while Julian Farade’s works recall
the madness of a Carnival, the “Mass” (mask in Creole) rather than a “mascherata”. There is something here closer to the charade, to a game of top side and under side, a study of materials where the image (the stage that is set for it) and the distance between the figures tell stories, an enigmatic mythology that starts with the titles.
Ultimately, I still feel like these paintings (Julian Farade’s and Sophie Lourdes Knight’s) are both part of a wider movement, an almost incantatory figuration, looking to enchant reality and break free from a certain form of rationality, working with exclusive dualities.
As a conclusion, these are two ways of imagining the world. Imagining it as a dancing ring, a procession (Julian) or as a charade, a theater of illusions. As joy or as anguish.
This short text will be printed and displayed tomorrow. It will wait for its reader. Here, I have only imagined the space: now, let’s hope that this assumption will match the real exhibition…
Text of the exhibition by Chris Cyrille-Isaac