Axel Vervoordt Gallery presents Michel Mouffe.
His works are built up out of many thin coats of paint and glaze, creating translucent layers that veil each other and blend into an almost immaterial surface. Meanwhile he steps away from the flatness of the surface by implementing subtle protuberances emerging from behind the canvas. As space is marked and the two-dimensionality of the canvas is overcome, his works result in an experience of spatial relationships. The battle between line and colour has been put aside so that the two elements can work hand in hand. Subtlety of colour in Mouffe’s paintings is significant—it requires a slowed down gaze in order to see the vibrations of the gradual coloured surface. The lines break the monochrome surfaces as tools that open up, and thus liberate the paintings to give visual expression to the abstract thoughts and ideals of the artist. His works convey sensuality and thought, inviting the viewer to enter into a mutually constructive, psycho-corporeal dialogue, while addressing the limitless space of the painting with all of the viewer’s basic senses.
Mouffe’s works are painted paradoxes. Like skin—at once a boundary and an intermediate—they linger between presence and absence, inside and outside. The paintings are not representations of a certain concrete reality, nor does their meaning reside in what is directly shown. Their being cannot be systematically deduced from external factors, but is rather to be found in what is veiled.
People are permeable and in-between in very much the same way as the surface of Mouffe’s sculptured paintings, lingering between presence and absence, inside and outside. The artist creates breathing bodies that invite viewers to engage in a back and forth dialogue between reflection and absorption.
- Michel Mouffe, L'Homme rouge, 2016