By COCO DOLLE November 21, 2023
Flight of Fancy is the new collection of paintings by Pierre Marie Brisson celebrating decades of presence at Franklin Bowles Gallery. In 1985, a soaring young French painter, Brisson was given his first solo exhibition by the American art dealer in his San Francisco gallery. Spanning over forty years, this exhibition is a reverence to the artist’s fantastic journey that has since unfolded.
An explorer at heart traveling the world, Brisson has taken numerous flights of imagination, nurturing a fundamental connection true to his artist’s nature. In his reveries, the artist dreams of escaping the fussiness of conventions, excavating the profound wisdom of humanity. Fascinated by archeological and philosophical meaning, a certain joie de vivre pertains in his works. Brisson draws inspiration from nature, movement and contemplation. His paintings evoke a lightness of being, a call for a utopian state, offering the viewer the opportunity to connect with meaning and explore deeper aspects of oneself.
Masterfully combining various techniques - scraping, cutting and gluing - to create the effect of timeworn and cracked surfaces, Brisson remains a modernist in the tradition of French impressionists and fauvists. His paintings continuously transcend the evanescence of fleeting moments, always akin to the grandeur for lyrical symphonies.
In Flight of Fancy, he presents a medley of subjects, including his signature themes, butterflies and water lilies expanding over new dimensions in triptychs and diptychs. Moreover, Brisson debuts a new series of dancers, a beloved subject to the artist, with five paintings inspiring a momentum of freshness. While his later paintings were direct inspirations from Degas’ Ballerinas, Brisson’s Euphoria(s) and Gravity(s) reveal contemporary figurines with elongated silhouettes suspended and intertwined in graceful movements. Their alluring femininity convey a sense of complete freedom transcending time and space.
Adding to this harmonious dance, are Swans making an exclusive entrance in this exhibition. Ancient symbols of purity and elegance, they are the oldest bird species known on earth. Famous interpreters in ballet form, Brisson chooses to highlight his Swans for their majestic mimetic formation. Here, the lake remains a classical form of contemplation and poetry.
Further joyous touches of succulent greens and yellows are paintings of large Sisicilan Lemons floating over canvases. Although more rare in the artist’s body of work, the generous lemons remind the viewer of the Brisson’s convivial nature, his love for cooking and hospitality. Thus giving to the Flight of Fancy exhibition an overall spirit of community and festivity. Exhibition on view until January 7, 2024. WM
Coco Dolle is a French-American artist, writer, and independent curator based in New York since the late 90s. Former dancer and fashion muse for acclaimed artists including Alex Katz, her performances appeared in Vogue and The NY Times. Over the past decade, she has organized numerous exhibitions acclaimed in high-end publications including Forbes, ArtNet, VICE, and W Magazine. She is a contributing writer for L’Officiel Art and Whitehot Magazine. As an artist, her work focuses on body politics and feminist issues as seen at the Oregon Contemporary (OR) and Mary Ryan Gallery (NYC).
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