Jocelyne Santos

Semur-en-Auxois, France

Artistic Processes
My way of processing, globally speaking, whether concerning painting or assemblage, is centered around three main lines. The main line, which I would call “mental,” is in the field of abstraction, with the use of simple geometric forms, mainly squares or rectangles, forming a sort of grid. This supports the “sensitive” line, which is given over to the exploration of color as a medium acting directly on the emotions or senses of the perceiver. The third “symbolic” line crosses the work as if in dotted lines, sometimes disappearing completely, at others reappearing more strongly like a main thread, a discrete framework that the perceiver is free to take hold of or not.

“Thus it is clear that the harmony of colors must be based on the principle of purposefully touching the human soul.” —Kandinsky (Concerning the Spiritual in Art, 1912)

Painting: Exploring the inherent qualities in color and rhythm
Concerning painting more precisely, I try to synthesize various elements. On one hand there is a very formal research—a taste for geometric composition, simple forms inspired by two currents that come together in me and which come from my mixed roots.

The Western current comes from Constructivism and Kandinsky or Joseph Albers. On the other hand there is a more emotional, lyrical approach, as one finds in Mark Rothko or Alfred Manessier. The African current also circulates through geometric rhythms as one finds on woven “strips” in various African ethnic groups—the Ashanti or the Ewe. They are geometric and abstract figures, yet carrying a symbolic and magical language. It is precisely the possibility of this double reading that interests me.

The introduction of the third dimension in my work led me to tackle the architectural aspect of color—how it influences our reading of space, how color, plane, and light affect the perception we have of an object, how our intellect takes over to create a coherent whole.

Unlike objects of everyday use whose coherence is obvious to us, my assemblages are modular and playful constructions, apparently simple in form, where complexity lies in the way color circulates throughout the whole, breaking it up, interfering with its unity, thus making the object indiscernible in its globality.

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