The living: from questions to questions

Ernest Breleur

The living from questions to questions is the title of my next exhibit at Maelle Galerie. I realize how this title encompasses my whole artistic work. If the questions that preoccupy me are definitely philosophical, they also address mostly a particular vision of sculpture. I shape my sculptural project. My ambition: give a shape to emptiness.

« From clay is made the vase
But it’s the void that makes the vase.
A house needs some walls and a roof
But it’s the living space
That makes the house.
Therefore, if matter is necessary
The essence of things is immaterial
As is the soul of human beings.*»

Here matter and light ally for the apparition of something strange. My sculptures let see the least matter possible. Each object finds its physical consistency in delicate strips made from matter and light that superimpose. I name this process « siping ». When practicing « siping », one of the subjects that concern me is the void, from the sculptural view as well as my philosophical view. My aim is to embody the genesis of the living’s metaphor, not to mimic or to find an explanation to the apparition of the being in the world but rather to bring out a poetics of the populating world. In that remote period of the world «settlement», there was an absence of life in visible shapes, an absence of model…

I like to imagine the range of possibilities opened by those velleities and those attempts of life by some anonymous cells, in their attempt to transform into species, into different entities. I also imagine the battle that the transformation must have been for those infinitely small that must have taken shape without a certain destiny, each living cell desiring to become a being in the world by inventing itself.

It’s in the « metaphorization » of the genesis that the motor of my creation must be found. What passionate me in the awakening of life is the frenzy manifested to access this very life, in parallel to the differentiation of each of these candidates to life. I think that a peculiar poetics as well as a poetics (such as the artist’s) inhabits the earth while the genesis of the living takes place. Light combined with a certain « je ne sais quoi » in those diverse endeavors to life. From no living form to the emergence of the infinitely small, place of the multiplication of the possible, it didn’t allow all the alchemies to see the light of day.

From a purely poetic view, I find fascinating how the first cells were willing to become something else than a cell. I can’t help but speculate how many failures, bifurcations, maybe even regress or interbreeding, or…
Still in my poetic vision, I believe I can see in this genesis of life a universe mostly chaotic: what would be the future of the transforming species. I wonder about that period as if I could contract it in a given time within my reach in order to better seize it and make it an object of reflection.

My creation, at the crossroads of life, vegetal and animal, crosses, crossbreeds to generate some beings in the world. This poetic vision of that genesis of life appeals to me, however it doesn’t represent the essential of the creation process. I seek a parallel between this vertiginous time where the living is created and my own artistic creation.
I dare to think of the beginning of life as a tremendous field of creation where every atom, every embryonic cell strives to become a part of the living. That’s life in all its frenzy.

The abundance of all the shapes, strange, colors of the materials must be extraordinary ; Referring myself to the genesis of the living, it serves as a pretext to set free my creativity by building a strange universe free of any constraint of representation.

*Lao Tseu