A brand new body of recent works by the French painter.
At the age of 80, painter François Rouan is returning to Galerie Templon almost two decades after his last show with a brand new exhibition of recent work. Complex and erudite, his new paintings stay true to thirty years of experimentation and artistic engagement, a "political utopia with a humanist dimension." His ambiguous figures and iconographic references are ornamented with motifs evoking the abstract fragments that characterise the artist's core method: braiding. Alternating between relishing the joys of form and colour and posing metaphysical questions, his work resonates particularly strongly with current concerns: our relationship with images, the reverse side of the surface, the capacity painting possesses to reconstruct a fragmental real and mental world.
Published on the occasion of the eponymous exhibition at Galerie Templon, Paris, in 2023.
Born in Montpellier, France, in 1943, François Rouan moved to Paris in 1961 to study at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-arts. His research into collages led to his first experiments with braiding in 1965, initially with gouache-covered paper than painted canvases, cut up then reassembled as a grid. His focus shifted to other techniques, including hatching and wax. In 1980 he broadened his practice to encompass other mediums, both photographic and film-based.
His work has been the subject of numerous solo exhibitions and retrospectives, notably at the Centre Pompidou in Paris (1975, 1983 and 1994), Musée d'Art Moderne in Villeneuve-d'Ascq (1995), Abattoirs in Toulouse (2006) and Musée Fabre in Montpellier (2017). He has been exhibited worldwide, including by the Pierre Matisse Gallery in New York (1972), Stadtische Kunsthalle in Düsseldorf (1979), Sezon Museum of Art, Tokyo (1997) and Beijing Institute of Fine Arts (2000). Between 1987 and 2005, François Rouan's work featured in a dozen exhibitions at Galerie Templon. In September 2024, the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon is holding a major retrospective of his work.