Discover all the shades of black of Pierre Soulages

In 1848, Hegel established the classification of the arts of his time. The ranking he made around the 19th century remains unchanged. Initially the painting is in third position, that is to say the 3rd art. It is a romantic art, because there is projection on two dimensions of human feeling and it is also among the superior arts. The most famous paintings are among those of the shades of black of Pierre Soulages. We will see first the biography of Pierre Soulages, secondly his “outrenoir” and thirdly the evolution of his art.

The biography of Pierre Soulages

Pierre Jean Louis Germain Soulages, known as Pierre Soulages, is a French abstract painter and printmaker (abstract that does not attempt to represent sensible reality). Born on December 24, 1919 in Rodez, France. Son of Amans Soulages and Aglaé Zoé Julie Corp. He was admitted to the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and met Colette Laurens (his wife) there. In 1946 he began works in paper, then continued with the glass tar method in 1948. From 1949-1952 he completed several theater sets. In 1950, Pierre Soulages appeared in group exhibitions in New York. His first solo exhibition in 1954 was in the United States. In 1957, he returned to printmaking and his first retrospective exhibitions in 1960. He was elected one of the best at the 1972 Munich Olympics and a founding member of the Committee of Intellectuals for a Europe of Freedom. He does not limit himself to these activities, as he also practices sculpture, lithography, silk-screen printing….

The Outrenoir of Pierre Soulages

Pierre Soulages is really known for his use of the reflections of the color black: he calls it “black-light” or the famous “Outrenoir”. For almost forty years, he submerged himself in this color. He treats more particularly the light that this color reveals, where he considers it to be a material. He paints this with the light reflected by the surface states of the black. For him, a black can be transparent or opaque, shiny or matte, smooth or grainy and that changes everything.

The evolution of his art

His works begin in 1946 and continue until today. Pierre Soulages paints and not depicts. Here are some examples to mark his evolution in painting. At his first exhibition, he presented “Brou de noix et huile sur papier, 74×47,5 cm” in 1947. Then, he seeks to “remove the sign of movement from the line” and exhibits an oil on canvas “Painting 200×266 cm” in July-August 1956. He began to paint trees, to present the Brou de noix ” Lavis de brou de noix sur papier, 76×54 cm ” in 1959. Afterwards, his painting embodies geometry and gesture with an Oil on canvas “Painting 260×202 cm” in June 19, 1963. He then showed what he called the three ways of black, saying that black never exists in the absolute, with the “Painting 222×137 cm” on February 3, 1990 and the “Painting 300×235 cm” on July 9, 2000.

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