Continuing our series of member features, this month sees work by TNG artist member Pascale Sola in the group exhibition EMERGE: The Second Edition at North London gallery, Highgate Contemporary Art. Organised as part of Emerge Contemporary, an initiative that runs alongside the gallery, the exhibition features a mixed selection of work by a number of artists, boasting everything from beautiful ceramics and abstract art to expressive landscapes and intricate drawings.
Pascale’s works in the exhibition correspond to her ongoing project in which she focuses her skills on painting the domestic items which we do not usually pay attention to, challenging herself to catch viewers’ attention by making them appear as beautifully intriguing, sculptured items. This is what drives Pascale in her work. Playing with lights and shadows brings a powerful ambiance to her artworks, set still in time and yet provoking viewers to wonder about the bigger picture each piece might be part of in the artists’ mind.
Pascale explains that, “In French, ‘still life’ is said ‘nature morte’, which literally translates to ‘dead nature’. My motivation to paint still life stems from my desire to prove this translation wrong. In my art, I strive to bring every-day objects and furniture into the spotlight, designing their shapes and sculpting their textures in a way which brings them to life. I have approached this challenge through three generations of paintings.”
Influenced by Georgio Morandi, Mark Rothko, Hammershoi and Lawrence Carroll, Pascale is fascinated by shapes, volumes and light. The London-based artist works in oils, using techniques picked up over a series of evening classes in Paris. Initially only painting from home as a hobby, Pascale moved to London in 1998, where she started her career as an interior designer in 2004.
Pascale’s need for simplicity and calm are reflected in her use of monochromes, and she particularly enjoys working with restrictive palettes of colours. A desire to pursue her painting further led her to settle into the Wimbledon Art Studio in August 2018. Here, she holds close a quote from G. Morandi: “One can travel the world and see nothing. To achieve understanding it is necessary not to see many things, but to look hard at what you do see.”
We asked Pascale to tell us about three of the paintings included in the Emerge exhibition.
The Blue Straw
“The Blue Straw is a part of my first, colourful generation. Often packed with forgotten sentimental value, everyday objects can carry much more emotion than is visible in their natural state. In this artwork, I wanted to remind the viewer of the joy, hope and feelings of deep longing such objects can hide, if only you look hard enough. Showing this work in the Emerge show is the best opportunity to see this painting in real life and ask yourself; what colour would my favourite objects be if I were to paint them?”
The Copper Vase
“The Copper Vase is a part of my second, greyscale generation. Using a restrictive palette of oil colours and playing with the lights and shadows in this piece put me in a timeless, honest and serene ambiance. Viewing the painting at Emerge gallery is fabulous to experience the smooth interaction between these objects which, when observed intently, brings a powerful sense of calm to the room around you.”
“Cenote is a part of my third, entirely monochromatic generation. Inspired by recent travels to Tulum, in Mexico, Cenote was born out of a restrictive palette of oil colours, as part of my on-going search for purity and simplicity. Come view the painting at Emerge gallery and lose yourself inside its deep blue tones, like you would looking into one of Mexico’s spectacular cenotes.” Pascale Sola.
Article by Toby Buckley.
Visitors can see EMERGE: The Second Edition at Highgate Contemporary Art until Monday, November 30, 2020, or view the featured works online via the EMERGE website.
You can follow Pascale’s progress through her website and Instagram page @atelier.psl, and find her in unit 203 (red studio) at Wimbledon Art Studio. You can find Pacale’s TNG Member profile, here.