Valérie Favre | Switzerland

The Art of Watching Birds, 2009 – 2011

Oil on Canvas
310x250 cm

Courtesy of Galerie Barbara Thumm, Berlin

Valérie Favre's paintings stand between figuration and abstraction. It is a way of painting without blinders, without fear of mistakes and errors – a liberating means of painting which does not hesitate to interpret a visibility of forgetting.

From the depths of the pictorial imagination of the subconscious, with dream images frequently evoked, we experience neither beginning nor end, but rather disclosure of the dark side of the subjective world view. Favre paints the picture as a cut through the surface of things where death is lurking everywhere.

The figures bursting out from the dark seem semi-human, semi-ghost like. Their faces look like screaming skulls. Their raised arms are like long, sharpened knives aimed towards the bird standing on the facing stage. This bird does not represent freedom and wanderings, but is rather depicted as a plucked and helpless victim, doomed to be sacrificed on the spread altar.

We are undoubtedly facing a nightmare scene that we cannot ignore due to the large dimensions of the work as we become part of what is happening inside it.