Patrice Valota: Days are Dark and Nights are Clear3. Mar - 31. Mar 12 / ended Hay Hill Gallery
10:30 am - 18:00
Hay Hill Gallery is pleased to announce a new exhibition by French artist, Patrice Valota.
Valota presents a unique handling of colour, deriving from the use of wax, his
predominant medium. He paints with the flame of a blowtorch, mastering the fusion of melted
matter and pigments to obtain a glowing surface. Wax sets off a very particular light, resulting
in a delicate, yet strong depth of colour: “It absorbs colours, transcends them and guides
me in my search for other hues. Wax is alive, sensual and at the heart of my story”.
In Days are Dark & Nights are Clear, the artist plunges us into the origins of colourcombining
forces of nature and spiritual grace, by way of instinct and controlled gesture.
The show comprises a new series of landscapes which hover on the brink of abstraction.
Characterised by seemingly pre-cellular or molecular forms, these scenes
simultaneously evoke sunsets, or interstellar clouds. In these works, where light and
darkness are both blended and contrasted, colour becomes an experience.
For Patrice Valota, painting is what allows him to return to a state of abandon and to
reinterpret what he used to see when accompanying his father down the quarries of the
family mushroom farm.
About the artist
Valota was born in Compiègne (Northern France) in 1950. His artistic calling began at the age
of 15, after seeing reproductions of works by Georges Rouault and Bernard Buffet. Valota
took some gouache, tore a bed sheet apart, grabbed a kitchen knife, his father’s pipe and
painted his first picture. His father, of Italian descent, was a mushroom farmer. Valota would
accompany him as a young boy and was amazed by the white mushrooms that appeared like
magic in the dark ancient quarry. The stone walls, lit only by the flame of a torch, revealed
naturally sculpted figures and shapes, setting his imagination alight. These same strong
images surged back into his memory, some 30 years later during a visit to Jean Cortot’s
atelier. Thus, at the age of 38 he finally decided to become a painter and three years later had
his first one-man show at the Lavignes Gallery in Paris.
Valota shares his time between his studios in Paris and Normandy. He has exhibited both
painting and sculpture in numerous solo shows and group shows. His work is part of many
reputable art collections including that of Alain-Dominique Perrin (Founder of the Cartier
Foundation for Contemporary Art) and John Travolta.
An exhibition of works by Patrice Valota will be held alongside the sculptures of Auguste
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