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Documentation d'artistes diplômés de l'EESAB, 2015 - 2020

Laurianne Simon

MÀJ 16-07-2018

Francis, 2016

Oil on Fabric, Wood
17 x 14 x 2 inches

Eugene, 2016

Oil on Fabric, Wood
17 x 14 x 2 inches

Helen, 2016

Oil on Fabric, Wood
13 x 13 x 2 inches

I use the imagery of the rooster fight as a metaphor for my relationship with paint. It predominantly refers to a battle with the materiality of paint, but it can also be interpreted as a fight with the ego, or as an obsessive fight with an art world that remains obstinately patriarchal.
In 2012, I painted Rooster Fight on Marcel’s Chessboard; six years later, I am left wondering who these roosters are, that I imagined fighting on Marcel Duchamp’s chessboard. In this way, I came to this body of work that can be seen as a presentation of fighters: a collection of rooster portraits named after influential 20th century artists, specifically ones that have an intimate relationship with their studio, and with the physical act of painting.
I am particularly interested in contemporary discourse around the temporality of paint and painting, and in what painting can communicate that other media cannot. Thinking about the term “a-temporality”, (used by science fiction writer William Gibson and heavily referenced in a 2014/2015 exhibition at the MOMA, The Forever Now) I am drawn to creating works that animate symbolism and concepts that have deep roots in art history, but do not necessarily indicate a aesthetic relationship to any particular era of art. As we are arguably still in the postmodern moment, I feel that my paintings have many avenues in which they can both claim their origins, and their right to exist. This series recognizes the importance of the trail-blazing painters that the paintings reference, but in a very contemporary way, they do so with humour and without exaltation.

As I am very much interested in symbolism that is referential to specific moments in art history, when I painted this series I was acutely aware that the imagery of roosters fighting is a recurring theme in historical painting, and especially utilized by painters that were a part of the “L’art Pompier” movement of the 19th century.

In addition, and in line with my desire to borrow from eras in art history that seem polarizing, the rooster fight is also a playful nod to Baldessari’s 1966 textual work, Tips for Artists Who Want to Sell; his final suggestion reads: “Subject matter is important, it has been said that paintings with cows and hens in them collect dust… while the same paintings with bulls and roosters sell.”
Laurianne Simon, May 2018