Viviane Michel

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As a child Viviane was inspired by Japanese "manga" cartoons and began to draw. This soon became a passion that she never lost and which plays a role of escapism for her, much like a personal diary. She studied at the School of Fine Arts in Toulouse, and discovered the different techniques of drawing, painting and graphic design.
She then embarked on her career as an artist, while teaching fine arts in high schools, giving classes in artistic awakening in childcare facilities and in an art therapy workshop.
Viviane depicts her own stories on the canvas. She gives life to her characters as natural elements. Recently, she has been evoking a nomadic life, constantly in motion. She paints shelters: tents and yurts, nestled in a tree or on top of a hill. However, the passage of time remains her greatest source of inspiration. She loves to show it through her "cloud-trees" where each root hurtles into the sky as another second has elapsed. Their leaves turn into capable hands to catch the passing of time. The artist calls them her "time thieves." Naturally, her favourite object has become the hourglass, whose drops or grains materialize time. She can then give them different aspects. She dresses them in colours, playing on the ambivalence of the word time/weather: turning gray, rainy, sunny, dissecting not only hours but also the day and night. These narrative images are painted, drawn and cut on the canvas. Her mixed media includes oil, tar, pencil and pastel. Layers remain distinct. Time leaves a trace, covered by another. Viviane incorporates papers or pictures, using her own photographs in which she highlights the details of daily life. Then colour splashes the canvas and tar "dirties" it. Once the canvas is dry, Viviane uses black pencil to refine, highlighting a shape or circling form a blotch. She also likes the black marks that are caused by engraving and when the text is mixed with the image to form typography. She hopes to convey the desire to read and provides the opportunity for the viewer to discover the secrets of these forms. This work is a subtle and universal outlet.
Viviane’s painting oscillates between the seen and the unseen with a mixture of spontaneity, quick gestures and meticulousness. It allows the viewer to observe every detail of her compositions so that the meaning and aesthetics of each particle of colour is revealed.

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