1978 Michael Peppiatt

Michael Peppiatt - Paris 1978

On Grataloup exhibition 

Herodiade Gallery - Saint-Etienne

Rachel-Guy Grataloup, who had a show recently at the Galerie Marquet and will be exhibiting in the Maison de la Culture in La Seyne, near Toulon, this summer, is a linear artist of quite different preoccupations. He works in series that have their starting point in a drawing made « sur le motif », then worked up and transposed on to canvas. All the lines on this first canvas are then incised, so that the original drawing can be reproduced, in different colours and with numerous variations on to other canvases by rubbing the « matrix » with pastel. The variations are closely thought out, interlocking conceptually as well as visually. A particular feature of landscape might me taken through different seasons, for instance, at different times of the day, and so conceived that one version represents the tonal « negative » of another.

By means of this process of transformation, Grataloup attempts to convey his belief in the universality of each aspect of nature. A tree may come to look like the sun, a symbol of all energy, all growth, reaching out ; and at the same time one may be aware of inevitable dualities : an explosion of matter held immobile, a radiance that consumes, a fragility in flower on the constant rise of strenght. The artist says that one such theme would give him enough to work on for a lifetime. Since he can find all existence in the fragmentation of basalt, in the glossy surge of the sea and the sand’s sculptured skin, one realizes that for him, ideally, all themes are in any case one theme.