Galerie Jérôme de Noirmont, Paris
January 30 – March 23, 2013
38 Avenue Matignon 75008 Paris, France
+33 1 42 89 89 00

Marjane Satrapi has always painted. Even if she has never shown it until now, painting is nevertheless the basis of all her creation, whatever its final shape. This passion for painting was initially revealed in the form of comic strips or films as Marjane Satrapi wanted to create works for a larger audience, accessible to everyone.For the first time, this exhibition unveils this hidden side of Satrapi’s artistic talents with 21 paintings, new or recent, all portraits.All these works are indeed conceived as portraits whether showing a single subject or larger scenes with two or four subjects. Marjane Satrapi analyses painting as a means of expressing her unconscious and yet the artist finds her inspiration in her familiar environment. Even if the subjects depicted in her paintings are anonymous, their features are physically inspired from characters from her childhood. In an approach that is paradoxically unrelated to feminism, she always draws women. Their faces inspire her more and at the same time seem to her more varied and easier to draw. The faces have very expressive features and are always represented with the mouth closed. They are the only nuanced part in these paintings and are painted in shades of color that express the subtlety of human emotions. By contrast, the subject´s body just as the rest of the scene are painted in a clear-cut chromatic range of colors and are the object of very constructed compositions where straight lines and flat areas of bold and lively colors contrast each other to put the subjects into better perspective.Marjane Satrapi admits her enchantment with Balthus’s interior scenes and their very elaborate composition as well as her admiration for Mondrian’s geometric constructions. However, the simplification of the lines as well as the color intensity inevitably bring to mind the sensual painting of Matisse who praised color as a "privileged instrument of communication and emotion."