Born in Aveyron in 1960, Christine Barrès has been passionate about art from a very young age and it is quite naturally that out of her passion was born her profession. For more than thirty years, she has painted large areas of color on large formats with a knife. Whatever the theme, everything is a pretext for color.
From her exhibitions in large metropolises such as New York, Shanghai or Abu Dhabi, she has retained the energetic feature of verticality, and has never ceased to paint the urban world from an enchanting point of view. Today, she turns to the portrait with the same passion that characterizes her.
Its essential color is the rhythm and the material. His work is born of spontaneity, his paintings offer us a surge of colors, the impression is strong, and emanate a magic harmony and great vigor.
When we meet, when we chat with Christine Barrès and she gives herself up on her routine, her days seem like hearing Sébastien Bras. Both are driven by the same love of nature which is a source of inspiration and oxygenation "I draw my strength from my land". She is a peasant girl who lives, works and dies in Aveyron. Not a morning without her walking her dog in the forest, picking wild carrots, storing the shimmering colors around her and bringing them back to her workshop. She describes herself as an “optimist therefore colorist” person it is completely logical I “I see life in color” she continues. In warm colors more precisely, yellow, ocher, red, fuchsias are her favorite colors even if blue has recently appeared in her paintings as well as green which she thinks she has brought back from a long trip to Asia where she was moved, imbued with the surrounding greenery. Indeed, even if "nothing" inspires her only daily ", she draws on what surrounds her, the Aveyron so but also the many trips she has made. New York subjugated her, followed by an exteriorization where for six months she painted skyscrapers. We can also summon Senegalese art and its threadlike figures that we find in some of its series.
Paint as you breathe.
She is a great traveler who leaves and discovers the world to return to refocus and breathe in the only place where it is possible, where it makes sense: "creation is raising the mountains of Aveyron". If Christine Barrès paints as she breathes, she also works as one cooks. She only paints in oil (as we cook in Crete) which allows her, every morning, back from her walk, to start her work as an alchemist. She mixes, combines, combines, aggregates, blends, unites and combines pigments to create her own colors with the aim of "seeing colors in real life, as in nature". She is a whimsical perfectionist who, like a great chef who does not serve perfectly cooked meat, never shows something unsuccessful. You can be as safe as structured, like a salad of wild herbs. The mischief is hidden in the details, in a brushstroke or in a fork. Even if "we are in the middle of nowhere" we are surrounded. Thus, everything about her is a story of exchanges, positive meetings and generosity. In Aveyron, we definitely come across the paragons of hedonism. "Living with your passion is extraordinary", sharing it is essential.
For over thirty years, Christine Barrès has been painting, self-taught. If she first thought problematic of not having an academic base, she realizes today that it allowed her not to lock herself in a shackles. Besides, if she has long favored square canvases, today she does not refuse the rectangular supports in which she draws her faces. She paints what she is and cannot cheat, she does not impose any rules except that of spontaneity. And this freshness, identical to that of dew in the morning in the undergrowth, transposes something of the order of great honesty and sincere humility in what it does. It gives what it is. And has been telling in his painting for many years. Each stage of his life marks a movement in his art. Before settling full time in the farmhouse in which she lives today her painting was only abstract. Once greed returned to earth, a certain form of epicureanism took shape. These are the series of jars of jams, "only big things, big fruits, certainly because I am greedy".
Although it now shows a figurative art, it is not formalistic and leaves to the mind and the eye its share of interpretation. When asked about her portraits, those they represent if they are children or not, mischievous she replies that "it is the children that you stayed".
Véronique Bras on the subject of Christine Barres:
"She is an artist whose work I already knew and appreciated before meeting her," says Véronique Bras about the painter. It is thanks to Jérôme Rose, owner of Galerie Le Taureau de Laguiole that Madame Bras visits Christine Barrès' studio. There it is obvious, his love of nature and Aveyron is a total coherence with the philosophy of Le Suquet. It is also a meeting, because Véronique admits being unable to put forward artists that she does not appreciate humanly, "it takes a connection, a conviction". When clients take pictures of the artist's paintings, the hostess is galvanized to be the relay of art, of the artist. Especially since she considers their two complementary universes with her series of jam jars Christine and the Bras Family tell the same story, and these paintings "bring color, gluttony, the touch of radiance to the walls of Suquet ”.
Between these two women, we can thank a man for the link he drew. He must be a bull!
Article "Gourmets de France" - N'20 • June 2016