The paintings of Gaétan Vaguelsy, graduated from the Beaux-Arts de Montpellier, have something that catches the eyes. Portraits, classic appearance (Les princes de la ville, 2017-2018), in which Gaétan Vaguelsy plays with the portrayal’s codes and reverses them.
He shows us a work where urban art and easel painting meet each other. A work that mixes oil painting and spray can and where precise gesture meets the smooth motion of the vandal graffiti artist he used to be. Is this a carefully orchestrated culture clash?
A culture clash that tackles the issue of the model in a classical manner. Usually center or side face, represented with a slightly low-angle, under an artificial light coming out from the top. An almost sacralizing light. The subjects show themselves in familiar positions, at the same time knowing and mocking, making eye contact.