David Salle: Paris Opera Paintings, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris Marais, 2004 David Salle: Paris Opera Paintings, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris Marais, 2004
David Salle: Paris Opera Paintings, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac Paris Marais, 2004
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Overview

Let us consider the construction of these paintings: Looking for the artist’s reasons of choice is vain because there is something of the performance in this procedure.

The Thaddaeus Ropac Gallery is delighted to present the latest works of David Salle who has established himself as a major figure in contemporary painting renewing the tradition of the early 1980s - with figures such Schnabel, Paladino – of our vision of figurative art. When and how can it be said that an artist is well known and that his work symbolises a period? Perhaps chance, talent and hard work all have a role to play. But when the work of an artist is immediately recognisable its power to evoke and characterise its period becomes apparent. This is the case of David Salle. His canvases have been noted for their juxtaposition of everyday elements (taken from popular culture: comic strips, advertising, graffiti) and more elegant images (for example with references to the history of art). The figurative elements are used in the same way as his predecessors used abstract lines: fragments seem to surge at the same time in...

The Thaddaeus Ropac Gallery is delighted to present the latest works of David Salle who has established himself as a major figure in contemporary painting renewing the tradition of the early 1980s - with figures such Schnabel, Paladino – of our vision of figurative art. 

When and how can it be said that an artist is well known and that his work symbolises a period? Perhaps chance, talent and hard work all have a role to play. But when the work of an artist is immediately recognisable its power to evoke and characterise its period becomes apparent. This is the case of David Salle. His canvases have been noted for their juxtaposition of everyday elements 

(taken from popular culture: comic strips, advertising, graffiti) and more elegant images (for example with references to the history of art). The figurative elements are used in the same way as his predecessors used abstract lines: fragments seem to surge at the same time in such a way that all formal hierarchy or narrative is denied. A figurative dripping.

Let us consider the construction of these paintings: Looking for the artist’s reasons of choice is vain because there is something of the performance in this procedure. The ‘cold’ fragments of women on stage – drawn from our memories of opera singers painted in black and white – confront incongruous elements; A woman wearing a suit comes face to face with the bare breasts and regard of a young person And the face of this star covered by a flower and zip fastener. It is easier to understand the heritage of Picabia who said that ‘every conviction is a curse’

The references to Pop Art and Realism are evident in these paintings where the presence of the object and persons take on authority while never detracting from a certain form of romanticism. There is a mysterious drama in this created space. This pictorial syntax that is so unique to David Salle is perfect for theatrical, if not operatic, staging. 

There is something magical in Salle’s dexterity. He works like a director and presents us with ‘the impossible encounter of an umbrella and a sewing machine’ which gives off a certain feeling of melancholy.

 David Salle was born in Norman. Oklahoma, USA. in 1952. He studied at the California Institute of Arts until 1975. He soon became one of the leaders of the new American figurative scene and his canvases were exhibited around the world (1982: Anthony d'Offay Gallery. London; Galerie Bruno Bischofberger, Zurich. 1984: Leo Castelli Gallery. NY) He was represented in France in 1985 by Galerie Daniel Templon, and moved to Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac 1996. David Salle lives and works in New York, USA.

Publications

David Salle Paris Opera Paintings

David Salle

Paris Opera Paintings
2004
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