Frame 61

Jean-Philippe Dordolo

Frame 61
Jean-Philippe Dordolo
 

 "I have no way to know how a parrot sees the world, but for a few days, I can try to imagine it."

 

Could you tell us a bit about yourself and your background? Where did you study?

I’m from the south of France. I moved to London in 2003. I studied my BA at the now-defunct Byam Shaw School of Art an graduated in summer 2011 - just before it got absorbed by Central Saint Martins. It was a great place. I’m currently studying for my postgraduate at the Slade School of Art in London.

Your more recent work is a series of paintings, depicting various objects, painted on the back of a canvas. Could you tell us a bit about these paintings?

These are not paintings, and there is no paint involved in the mix - apart from some occasional oil paint line drawings on the surface of some of the work. They are made from the moulding of the back of a painting. Therefore they adopt all the characteristics and details of the back of a stretched canvas.

They could be described as reverse paintings in that I work my way from the front (surface visible to the viewer) and toward the background and ultimately backing of the work. This is quite different from a traditional painting where the artists will work their way from the back to the front by adding several layers of paint on top of each other. In my case the object - its bone structure - is the painting. These works are completely solid and I colour the material I pour in the mould to reveal an image.
 

  Porträts eines Nachahmers, 2018

Porträts eines Nachahmers, 2018

  Cassandra Ich sehe große Gefahren (Wilde Sittiche), 2018

Cassandra Ich sehe große Gefahren (Wilde Sittiche), 2018

  Das Bild einer Wiese, 2017

Das Bild einer Wiese, 2017

You are presenting works in a solo exhibition “Fliegen ohne Flügel" curated by Kristian Day. Could you tell us a bit about the show and the pieces you will be displaying there?

The work is the result of several experiments surrounding the notions of form, figuration and perspective. By perspective, I mean the way we experience things as either a maker or viewer looking at the works.

I have some diptych presenting the same scene from the point of view of a painter looking at their model, and vice versa (… the model looking back at the painter's easel). It highlights the differences in perception - whether these are subjective or simply the result of biological factors. There is a lot of space for imagination as well, and empathy. I have no way to know how a parrot sees the world, but for a few days, I can try to imagine it. Whether the result is true or not is of no concern to me.

The sculptures are taken from more familiar or recognisable forms. I applied a lighter treatment to their surface, something that is not always very ‘sculpture-like’. I like the idea of sculpture as a drawing, or as a skin around a volume. I’m interested in leaving some of them open: the idea of the front and the back of it, and the beauty of the imperfections within - where the surface hasn’t yet been over treated or considered.

How do you go about naming your work?

It needs to happen quite instinctively. If I can’t think of a title within 5 minutes of finishing the piece, I have to forget about it and come back fresh to it later. It’s a question of gut feeling and circumstance: a relationship between me and the work before anything else.

  Alt. Im Park. Auf einer Bank. Mit gebrochenem Fernglas. 2018

Alt. Im Park. Auf einer Bank. Mit gebrochenem Fernglas. 2018

  Ein singender Vogel (Eine Pause, dann ein langer Kuss), 2018

Ein singender Vogel (Eine Pause, dann ein langer Kuss), 2018

  Papagei eines Papageien, 2017

Papagei eines Papageien, 2017

  Politik I-IV, 2017

Politik I-IV, 2017

Tell us a bit about how you spend your day / studio routine? What is your studio like?

Since going back to studying, my routine has changed a little from the days of having my own studio. But it’s got to do more with the spacial concerns of sharing a space with other artists rather than with my work ethic.

Ultimately it all starts the same. I need to be at the studio by 9.30-10am. I settle in and observe whatever I’ve done the day before. I try not to overthink too much. I let my hands do the talking. Sometimes I will be so absorbed in making things that I’ll skip lunch altogether. Sometimes not. Then it’s Korean food from the local supermarket for lunch. I recently took to spending at least an hour a day making small A4 pastel drawings. It’s a nice break from other things. I leave the studio around 6.30-7pm.

I tidy up before I go and bundle everything up in a corner of the room. Broom and dustpan.
 

What artwork have you seen recently that has resonated with you?

I went to the studio of painter Dominic Kennedy in East London earlier this year. I had a blast. I love his work. I stumbled upon a couple of Manfred Pernice works in Cologne as well. It’s always a treat.

Apart from your solo show “Fliegen ohne Flügel”, is there anything new and exciting in the pipeline you would like to tell us about?

A group show in Berlin in November. More later!

Dordolo's solo exhibition “Fliegen ohne Flügel" will be at the Saatchi Gallery from the 3rd to 27th May.

Artist's website

Kristian Day

All images courtesy of the artist
Publish date: 30/5/18