Standpoint of an artist on his painting work
From ignorance to innocence
I started painting because I felt a call that I had to respond to. But I did not know what to paint. So in my first sketch book, in 1981, I began to draw lines based on the free-hand movement. The eye was then extracting shapes and volumes from these interlaced 2lines. This series of drawings was called : "With Open Eyes ", "With Closed Eyes" or "Wandering of the Line." But most of them remained in the state of sketches until around 2008. Instead, I left these drawings to devote myself to drawings consisting of composite human-like shapes that I gathered under the name "In the Ossuary of Dreams".
In the mid 90's I started with a series of drawings, using simpler volumes, which I called "Mecanosphere", "Technosphere" or "FRA", that is to say ”Fragment”, but also ”Fraternity”.
Around 2010, I returned to some of my old sketches from the 80’s and to my old way of creating images by letting my hand wander freely on the paper. I was looking for a kind of shape carrying a vibration that when coming in tune with our inner self, will resonate and reveal its power and energy.
In order to further expand the field of possibilities, I introduced chaos as a starting point for all my pictorial research. I then discovered that the way chosen to proceed is decisive in the direction that this pictorial exploration will take.
For some years now, my painting work has been starting with a reflection on how I'll begin. Then, once the action started in a predetermined direction, I try to let that go so that the final result expresses the vitality and energy engaged in the act of painting, free from the worry like "is it good". Here, doing well means doing freely without thought of any kind. With the concern to preserve the spontaneity of the pictorial game is added a personal vision which properly belongs to the artist and which is the fruit of years of experience and pictorial meditation. The final result after all aspires to witness the marriage of spontaneity of the gesture with the intention of the spirit. But to be able to remain natural, this personal intention and way of looking must remain quiet unconscious of itself. Because I believe that in a sense, in art, what is done too consciously is not truthful.
The meaning of creation
What really matters is the purpose and attitude behind any artistic act? Why do we create a piece of art? For me it is a way to deepen my relationship with nature, life and myself. It is very much to try to create as nature creates. We can have some guidelines to help us with this, such as spontaneity and a mixture of hazard and necessity. In nature hazard seems forever active in the creation of new living structures and if this structure is not adapted to the environment or surroundings it ceases to exist quite quickly. In artistic creation one can also say that human feelings cooperate with the random. The random gives way to new possibilities that the artist chooses to explore, or not.
Another important element in nature's creativity is the ability to create order out of chaos.
The universe emerges from chaos. Chaos means that everything looks the same in all directions, that is to say that one can not distinguish between one direction or another and therefor, to choose between one or the other becomes meaningless. So to create order means to bring differenciation.
It seems that the original chaos that we call the Big Bang was like a tank full of seeds of orders. Since then, chaos seems to play an important role in nature's evolution towards increasingly complex forms.
One final aspect of nature's creativity: the need from time to time to destroy in order to recreate differently.
When an artist is confronted with chaos, it gives him an opportunity to use his imagination to find through it the appropriate seeds of order to be developed by him.
There are a thousand ways to create chaos on paper, wood, canvas or other surfaces, and here too one can become very creative. However, personally I do not think that artistic work should stop here. I am not satisfied with an artistic work ending with hazard and no further personal interference. What interests me in a piece of art is the marriage of the personal with the universal, hazard and intention, destiny and karma. To continue working with what comes out spontaneously from chaos is essential to me, a way for the artist to meet the unknown within, a way to access new hidden seeds of order to work with. The work reveals and creates simultaneously the shapes and structures that the artist unknowingly carries within himself. The final product ought to be the fruit of both the random and the artist's will.
As an artist is working with the random, up pops a style that expresses emotions, memories and visions which the artist carries within himself and which his work aims to reveal not only before the eyes of others, but first of all before his own.
Didier Mazuru Stockholm 1 oct. 2015
Emergence of a subject in pictorial work
Coming back to meaning and thematic in art, it is a complex thing with many different definitions and approaches.
Basically, there is usually a kind of direction or idea, even vague to start with, when starting a painting. The topic can be very abstract, maybe connected to a particular organisation of lines, a particular rythm, a color ratio, a peculiar texture, the use of a singular technique like decalcomania, spots of colours, jet of paint in a particular way, lines obtained by a spontaneous (or disciplined) gesture of the arm or hand... Any means that can help to explore new types of shapes are welcome.
Often in contemporary art, the theme appears during the process of creation itself and not at the beginning. The artist is looking for a theme or a subject through the act of painting. It is like looking for a track that can lead the artiste to something new or unknown to him or her.
As Picasso said it, the purpose of art is not to copy nature but to create as nature does. It is a means to understand how we are functioning ourselves as a creative being and to get closer to the mystery of creation.
But from the watcher’s perspective, to appreciate nature you do not need to know the laws behind the various forms that nature can take. And it is the same with modern art. It should be able to talk to us through feeling without any need for explanation. But at the same time, any artwork is a specific visual language, it requires time for the eyes of an observer to get use to it, as it is with music for the ears of the listener. In art, any new langage takes time to be explored, and if not properly understood, at least deeper appreciated.
Didier Mazuru Stockholm 28 jan. 2016