Lisson Gallery



Bernard Piffaretti

In the studio with Bernard Piffaretti

In the studio with Bernard Piffaretti

French abstract painter Bernard Piffaretti invites us into his studio and discusses his work. Directed and photographed by Justin Westover in 2020, the film features commentary from art critic and poet, Raphael Rubinstein and was produced ahead of Piffaretti's second exhibition with Lisson Gallery – Bernard Piffaretti: Coda which featured on the gallery's Online Exhibition platform. His current exhibition, Pick Up (4 May – 11 June 2022, New York) presents a recurring situation that instructs the viewer to look for a second time. 

"My solo show at Lisson Gallery does not intend to pay homage to any particular artist. Above all, I create recurring situations. If one takes a closer look at the forms and figures I have been producing since the beginning, one encounters a 'second time'."

"Modern artists, as well as their contemporary colleagues, are looking back over their shoulders. Responding to the pressing concerns of the moment, yes, but: Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, Cubism, Futurism. Subsequently, even the 'avant-garde' comes 'après'.

An analysis of the different components of painting led me to make 'duplication' a working method, as it is usually described in texts. It is a tool to make the painting visible, a form of metapainting. I often say: 'I paint painting'.

Whatever artists do, they are always faced with a resumption. For the past 40 years, my practice of painting has incorporated multiple references from the history of painting, as well as from my own work. These previously used typologies impose themselves on me. The effect caused by the succession of pictorial situations, produced on one side of the painting, is a memory of what will be reinitialized chronologically on the other. A blank canvas does not exist. Everything is there. Through the central partition, the beginning of the painting marks its resumption and its incompletion."

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