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Atelier Jérôme Dupin


Travioles & Approximations

Exhibition from 6th to 29th march 2017
Opening on 6th march at 6:00pm
Meeting with the artist on 6th march at 4:00pm.

With the participation of M. Jérôme Boutterin, M. Michel Collet, Mme Anaïd Demir, M. Jean-Marc Réol, M. Tristan Trémeau.

The exhibition Travioles & Approximations presents nine paintings on paper by artist Jérôme Dupin. The series was specially created for the exhibition at the Sorbonne Artgallery. The bright red color passes from frame to frame, like an animated spot of a folioscope, changing positioning, size and shape on the white background.An energy thus emerges from the series: from the play of color with the moving shapes arises an aspiration towards a beyond perception.


«Dancing in the chains»

Inserted, embedded in the thick baroque frames of the gallery, the painting tries to escape its frame. Integrating the massive and static frames where his works are nestled, the artist questions the relationship of the flourishing of art to constraint. If the temptation to “get out of the box,” or perhaps contain yourself, is exciting - even camouflaged the box would still be there... Jérôme Dupin thus proposes, in an elementary way, to explore the possibilities of a possible freedom within the framework. If this question is expressed in painting, it reflects a broader reflection, which is also found in his video productions (Captchapoem, 2014).

Through painting

Approximations, Jérôme Dupin’s painting does not command, does not respond. It proposes, suggests, and perhaps inspires another view of the world, slightly offbeat. Travioles, the wobbly and the unstable are aesthetic and political biases. The shapes of this series move without reference marks, without coordinates. They can disorient the spectator: who would be, therefore, of traviole? Painting or us? Using geometric shapes and a unique color, Jérôme Dupin does not seek the spectacular. The virtue of his art is to leave space for thought.

Atelier Jérôme Dupin
Hôtel des Arts Toulon Jérôme Dupin 2010

At Sorbonne Artgallery

Invite Jérôme Dupin to exhibit as part of the Art&Flux team’s (Institut ACTE) research-creation enhancement initiative, his work is at the heart of a political, social and institutional dynamic in this prestigious academic context.This interplay of dynamics is also found when the citizen Jérôme Dupin deploys, in parallel with his artistic activity, his civil function intended to enrich the common good. It should be stated here that this dual position is marked by coherence and provides an essential foundation for the painting that unfolds within the Sorbonne Artgallery.


Journey of the artist
Born in 1956, Jérôme Dupin studied art at Villa Arson in Nice and then became artistic director in several advertising agencies. In 1992, he left everything, his work and Paris, to return to painting. His artistic curiosities come as much from the heritage of Duchamp and Matisse, Hantaï, as from Viennese Actionnism, Fluxus, Land Art, BMPT, Supports/Surfaces… His work, exhibited in France and abroad, is listed in private and public collections.  In parallel with his work as an artist, he has been a professor at art schools and is currently an inspector in the Directorate-General for Artistic Creation of the Ministry of Culture and Communication.

Jérôme Dupin, H du Siège, Valenciennes, 2005 © Philippe Bettrancourt
Jérôme Dupin, H du Siège, Valenciennes, 2005 © Philippe Bettrancourt
Atelier Jérôme Dupin
Jérôme Dupin



          One day, a few years ago, a leading figure in the art world told me, responding to a file I had sent him just to have the opportunity to meet him, that he would be very surprised if we could base a painter’s approach on both American minimalism and surface supports.

          This opinion intrigued me at first, then finally led me to commit myself to the certainty, at least almost, that everything was precisely possible between these two «movements», even outside or around.

Although very well placed to know, this important character could not but ignore that I drew the elements of my reflection as much from Duchamp as from Matisse, without forgetting the Viennese Actionism neither Fluxus nor the Land art or BMPT.

            One day, a few years ago, a leading figure in the art world told me, responding to a file I had sent him just to have the opportunity to meet him, that he would be very surprised if we could base a painter’s approach on both American minimalism and surface supports.
       I think that’s when I realized that the disciplinary obsession of categories was a really damaging handicap for artists, especially in France.
        About thirty-five years after this episode, I also realize how much the obsession of commentary on has built a very particular approach and diffusion of art.

Basically, these two obsessions bring art, its diffusion and its reception to a simple cultural mode, of which we know quite well today the progressive shift towards entertainment.
            Thus, by categorizing, disciplining and commenting, we have probably favoured (at least) two kinds of art. That of an ever more speculative market (thanks to Thatcher and Saatchi) and that of a «small» market, if not a non-market - condemning artists to live as rock stars or to survive sparingly rather than to really live from their art.

            Personally, I have nothing to complain about. I am not interested in success, nor in the market, nor in survival.
            What brings me to the workshop, to the extent that I have ideas to do a few things, is simply my life.
            I don’t know what I’m for. I don’t know what I’m for.

           All I know is that I only do something when it’s necessary, one way or another.Of course, after all these years of doing things, I can almost understand what I have deployed, following a more or less conductive thread. But I am convinced that I have not really programmed anything. Worse, I have always refused to even project anything. For personal freedom, no doubt.

           Freedom that obviously does not exist.But freedom that I need to imagine myself to «suspend» reflection, theory, history, culture, to do, finally, something. To perform a job.
            So every session at the workshop requires a real precondition. The idea is never to do something half or about. It’s about time. It’s about time. It’s about day-to-day and long-term. And I’m running out of time.

            For me, artistic work is at this price.
            To reject the market as it has become and to refuse to burst the open mouth for art as it has become in its condition of existence.
            We are not going to sell works like common tin cans, are we - nor commit suicide because we are not recognized for its true value.

           Another possibility, if we are not happy, remains of course to do something other than art.
            Of course, it’s all very rough and a little rough, as it should be.


Jérôme Dupin

Janvier 2017

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