Beauty and the Beast in Aphrodite’s garden

Beauty - Beast: a reversal that seems like an oxymoron, in which the miraculous conceals the harshness of reality, where the barren can reveal a treasure.

This form of functioning is already present in my work:

The sculptures are grafted with objects taken from reality (tables, armchairs…) and are transformed into unique, disturbing forms. In contrast, the juxtaposition of formless materials leads to the appearance of oddly familiar identities.

In the paintings, does the superimposition of a ‘’magic formula’’ further obstruct the accumulation of information drawn on a different scale (plans, hands, silhouettes, etc.) already confronted by the elaborate nature of the materials (embroidered prints, shading with gold or silver leaf)?

Beauty and the Beast, or what we read in the two-faced Janus mirror which is our identification and interpretation of reality.

An inner garden:

- The rose: the quintessential symbolic flower is at the centre of the drama of Beauty and the Beast.

- The armchair: where Beauty sits in order to lean towards the mirror, the screen which reveals the lives of her loved ones when they are away from her.

- The apple: in that other myth, the Three Graces, a symbol of love (like the rose), but also of original sin, is transformed into a monster of discord.

- The mandrake: an anthropomorphic root (poisonous and narcotic, ‘’strength’’) was considered an aphrodisiac with supernatural powers causing harm.

- The butterfly: metamorphosis, or the myth of Psyche. In Japan it symbolises woman, and two butterflies depict conjugal bliss.

- Love in a cage (physallis): the Beast does not win Beauty’s love by keeping her prisoner, but by allowing her to escape in order the better to return.

This inner garden is also a secret garden, where one must look through the looking glass in order to discover the deeper essence of things.

Bellamorphosis and Betamorphosis two large paintings, like an open book or tapestry, tell the story of the inner garden, its invention and the cross-over between these stories of the supernatural and the fantastic, the mingling of sensations, cultures and heterogeneous materials.

*A Reversed formula of beauty is defined more as an anatomical or botanical board, a pattern of beauty, enumerating the various ingredients that make up the recipe of Aphrodite’s inner garden.

In Aphrodite’s inner garden, the armchair grafted with a mosaic of porcelain garlic cloves (a kind of key-ring to ward off the evil eye) is transformed into a four-legged monster. Will it succeed in exorcising bad luck?

Three oversized ‘’love in a cage’’, plants become the universe of a lion with butterfly’s wings. In one of the cages we read the words ‘’To the most beautiful’’. The transformation of the Beast, or strength and courage as an antidote to the monster of discord.

On the wall, a rose gazes in terror over the whole…


* Note : In 1932, a mathematician, George David Birkhoff (1884-1944), faithful to the ideas of Gustave Theodore Fechner (1801-1887), father of sensory psychophysiology (perception / affect) proposes a simple mathematical formula to express beauty : M = O/C, where M is the measure of beauty, O is order, and C complexity.

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