Liv Jourdan and Mathis Pettenati

Focus on graduates of Villa Arson Nice

Preview Friday 24 March

Curated by Muriel Enjalran

In partnership with Villa Arson Nice.

As part of its 40th anniversary, the Frac is supported by the Fondation Galeries Lafayette and the Château Bonisson.

The Frac has invited Liv Jourdan and Mathis Pettenati, recent graduates of the Villa Arson, to take over its experimental plateau. 1+1=3. Composing a pictorial environment frequented by the forms of living things, the two artists immerse us in the heart of a fantasised symbiosis, awakening the different senses. Manifested by multiple blossomings, the painting touches the flows of life, the fabric of borders, the coiling of rockeries. It ends up giving rise to a new form: that of a common garden tending towards mutualism. The different representations of a changing living world, at times parasitised, enter into dialogue and open up a reading field in three stages. Although the two artists’ practices assert themselves by their singularities, the idea here is to observe them living together.

Liv Jourdan, In a cytierrean mood, 2022.
Liv Jourdan, In a cytierrean mood, 2022.
Peinture à l’argile, pigments, céramique, tissus, parfum, son, fleurs de bougainvilliers, dimensions variables.
Crédit photo Jean-Christophe Lett/Villa Arson Nice.

Liv Jourdan born in 1988 lives and works in Nice. A 2021 graduate of Villa Arson, she has also studied clinical psychology and practices theatre. Her multidisciplinary research leads to her explore the broader field of painting, through a sensory fluidity and a border aesthetic on the edge of sound arts, olfaction and poetry. Interested in new stories of the Anthropocene, she explores relations between ornamental accesses and the psychology of the link between emotions and the worlds of living beings.
“I take inspiration from research on symbioses, mutualisms, and parasitising, to gives shape to ornamental environments that affect the different senses. To me, ornamental dynamics, hybrids between figure and abstraction, evoke phenomena of the energies, exchanges, and links that are central to living beings, to relations between humans and nonhumans. These strata of interconnection are what interest me.” Liv Jourdan

Matthis Pettenati, Chrysalis Shoe 1, 2022.
Matthis Pettenati, Chrysalis Shoe 1, 2022.
Huile, acrylique, vernis et latex sur coton, 180 x 180 cm.
Crédit photo Jean-Christophe Lett/Villa Arson Nice.

Born in 1997 in Toulouse, Mathis Pettenati lives and works in Brussels. Having originally practiced drawing and printing, he started painting at the end of his degree course at Villa Arson, where he graduated in 2021. He was the recipient of the Francis Bacon MB Art Foundation scholarship in 2021. His painting, which could currently be characterised as “painterly painting”, is produced in large formats and series. Inhabited by plant motifs that are difficult to identify, Mathis Pettenati’s paintings are constructed spontaneously in the studio, according to rules set out by the artist.
“There are lots of organic forms in my works, and I like to think that the cycle of painting and the cycle of the living are placed in parallel. It starts with an idea that germinates, that spreads over the canvas little by little, blossoms, then ends up infested with mushrooms. That’s the time to shift to another format. There’s also something alienating in the fact of painting the same images in a loop. By dint of repetition, I almost forget the subject of the painting.”
Extract from an interview with the artist by Vittorio Parisi, curator of the exhibition Timeline of a Fruit Puddle (Villa Arson 2022).