Paintings & Photography at Barbizon
17th May- 30th June 2013
In 2012 the Besharat Gallery, based in Atlanta, opened a new space in Barbizon. Here Massoud Behsarat, a passionate patron of the arts regularly presents the works of those artists whose work he loves and wishes to share with a larger public. Amongst these is Antoni Taulé, a globally renowned artist who has enjoyed enormous success amongst collectors and connoisseurs enraptured by the veritable poetry and mystery of his paintings.
Having already exhibited in Atlanta a group of works from the series ‘Identity/Alterity’, Taulé now presents in Barbizon an exhibition uniting twenty-three paintings and photographs created between Paris and Formentera from the 1970s until today.
An architect by training, a photographer and painter, Taulé stages light in a perpetual game of mirrors and perspective, to quote “ the keystone , the light as drawing, as experience and subject of the oeuvre” ( Roberto Bonnacorsi, Villa Tamaris) through which he formulates this simple question: where are we ?
TheLetter, 1975, oil on canvas (detail), 97 x 130 cm,
Upon these canvases of vast dimensions minimalist spaces predominate, with reality fast fading. Empty rooms, obscure corners, deep perspectives, glow across the evanescence of those vacillating sources of light: everything conspires to install a sense of doubt, encouraging introspection.
Sometimes, when the presence of the human figure appears, it does so in an unexpected manner, its apparition rich in mystery, traversing the solitary silhouettes, silent and mute witnesses of the permanent conflict between shadow and light. Dream and the reality become indistinguishable. Here the theatrical dimension is clearly affirmed; each of these paintings suggests the décor of some new enigma.
Could it be possible that Taulé utilizes architectural form as a metaphor of those mental space in which are played out all our doubts, our anxieties, our choices and metaphysical demands?
Marie Claire Uberquoi, curator of his major exhibition at the Fondation Vila Casas notes that “with Taulé the treatment of the image reveals an ambiguity wherein operates a fusion between the pictorial, the painterly, and the photographic. This is one of the most characteristic traits within his work. The photographs are not used as a preparatory stage for the paintings; they are their own creations in themselves, in which the composition and the effects of the reverse-angle light create the very same bewitchment as the paintings.”
This same month of May 2013 the photographs of Taulé are simultaneously on display on the first floor of l’Alcazar in the 6th arrondissement. In addition l’Instituto Cervantes has selected two of his paintings for an exhibition in homage to the novel Marelle by Julio Cortázar, the celebrated Argentine writer. Cortázar, who was fascinated by the paintings of Taulé, wrote of them: “in total they naturally breed an atmosphere both fantastical and profoundly real. This lures you to imagine that each of his paintings is an instant of something which has not existed or which could come into existence at any moment.”
Txeca, 1978, 60 x90 cm, photograph, inv.1464
ABOUT ANTONI TAULÉ
The work of Antoni Taulé has been the subject of numerous retrospectives, in 2010 at the Fondation Vila Casas (Barcelona) and in 2006 at Villa Tamaris (La Seyne-sur-mer). His works are represented in major private collections and important international public institutions in America, Japan, China and, of course, Spain.
Taulé was born in Barcelona in 1945. He studied architecture, graduated with his diploma in architecture, and worked briefly in the Paris office of Le Corbusier. His first solo exhibition took place in 1966 and in 1972 he completed his training in London at the Royal Academy of Art and the Chelsea College of Art & Design.
In the 1960s Taulé created performances and street paintings. Since 1970 he has painted imaginary architectures, “rooms, tables and chairs”, his paintings have the appearance of reality, a certain autobiographical character but are inspired by dreams which give space to the creation of photographs and paintings.( Series« Space Outside Time », 1974 ; « Blind Velázquez », 1975 ; « Contre- jour », 1976 ; « Laboratory of Awaiting », 1977).
Beginning in the 1980s he created set-designs for the theatre (The Three Sisters of Tchékhov directed by Ariel Garcia Valdès, 1982; Childhood by Nathalie Sarraute directed by Simone Benmussa, 1984), and for the opera (Washington Square by Noureev for the Palais Garnier in Paris and the Metropolitan Opera in New York, 1985).
Throughout the 1980s and 90s, grottoes and prehistory, (series « Threshold of the Cavern », « Cromocosmos »), ruins and deserts but also scientific research have been at the heart of his oeuvre. Toward the end of the 1990s his paintings evoked geometric environments, almost always uninhabited and recalling his travels. (Function F, 2003; Destruction of Symbols, 2006; Tian Men, 2006). Since 2007, he has paid homage to literature (La Mer mêlée au soleil, 2009), to photography (Brûlé de soleil, 2008), old master painting (LeCarlin, 2011) as well as contemporary (Portrait de Isabel Rawsthorne, 2010; The Vertical Enigma, 2011 ; La Cour carrée, 2011). In 2010 the Fondation Vila Casas granted him a retrospective (« The Magic of Silence »). In 2011 began the series « Identité Altérité » and « Taulé and his Circles ». In 2012, Antoni Taulé exhibited in Atlanta USA at Besharat Gallery. In 2013 he exhibited his paintings at the Forêt Verte gallery as well as at l’Institut Cervantès, whilst simultaneously showing his photography at l’Alcazar, at the Galerie Artrial in Perpignan and in Barbizon.
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