The exhibition features works from the artist’s latest series Sensitive Water Mapping, exploring her long-standing interest in questions of time and memory, as experienced through the perception of the natural landscape. Driven by a constant search for the new, a “need to arrive at a place where everything needs to be felt for the first time”, Ducommun draws creative inspiration from discovering new panoramas and unfamiliar geographies.
Sensitive Water Mapping continues Gallery Elena Shchukina’s ongoing programme of exhibitions exploring our relationship with nature, with past shows by Allan Forsyth, Luke Jerram, Seung-Hwan Oh, Kyosuke Tchinai and Xawery Wolski.
“Mapping as a memory of the place”
In is in the memories of her encounters with nature that Ducommun’s work originates. In Sensitive Water Mapping, richly textured paintings evoke memories of aquatic landscapes. These works are the fruit of research on rivers and streams, speaking about the footprints of two elements: water and stone. With her work, Ducommun simultaneously transcribes her own memory of felt experience, and maps the traces of time and history beheld in the landscape itself.
Ducommun builds her paintings as they appear to her in her memory, in successive layers. Slowly combining thick brushstrokes of cobalt, swirls of brilliant white and explosive bursts of greens, yellow and reds, in her process we can witness the materialisation in paint of “memories that appear, disappear, overlap, forget themselves and one day resurface”
Just like the ‘mental landscapes’ in her memory, the colours and textures of her paintings become entangled, inextricably bound to each other. Ducommun’s mapping process is durational and multidimensional; the resulting pictures trace myriad places and memories. As the artist explains:
“Each painting is not bound to one location. They contain several places, they are the result of the layering and intermingling of memories of felt experience”