As a teenager, Pierre Auville painted with spray paint in urban spaces and took art classes. A graduate of Sciences Po, he was a journalist before joining the French Navy.
Inspired in his travels by graffitied walls and their breaks, they become his support, like pieces he would have borrowed from the Berlin Wall.
He casts his material in previously sculpted molds. And it is micro-explosions that he makes the metal structures, the breaks reappear, because nothing must appear artificial. His work is transformed, the external, raw, pigmented material becomes internal.
"I immediately liked the mix between Pop and Street Art, the use of light cement as a surface material. I imagine him in the future working on monumental works that will be able to migrate, again, from the inside to the outside." Eric Landau
Pierre Auville is a French visual artist, born in 1968 in Le Havre. He lives and works in Paris.
Pierre Auville studied political science as well as art history to finally take art classes in night shcool and in artist's studios for decades. His artistic training was first done on the job, by painting sailboards and boat hulls, motorcycle helmets, then by intervening in the urban space by painting walls and asphalt, with a preference for the supports exposed to the wear of time.
Pierre Auville explored many fields before devoting himself fully to artistic creation: journalist, officer in the French Navy, passing through hospital emergency services and management positions in several metallurgical industries, he rubbed shoulders with many environments populated by radically different surfaces and materials that would feed his inspirations. Thus he explored many possibilities before definitively turning to construction materials such as concrete, steel or cement, because of their versatility.
His artistic approach is nourished by the observation of cave paintings, such as those of Lascaux, which he visited as a child, the concrete roads of hot regions such as the southwest of the United States, as well as the abandoned blockhouses of the Atlantic Wall.
Pierre Auville's artistic vocabulary borrows mainly from geometric abstraction, Arte Povera and Street Art.
His work is a search for the moment when color and materials merge and return to their original mineral essence. Using techniques from the construction and nautical industries, he applies cement to high density foam panels to create works ranging from 1 to 8 square meters. The muted colors of his works come from the cement itself, in which he does not incorporate any chemical resin in order to preserve its mineral characteristics. He obtains a wide palette of off-whites, beiges, greens and gays depending on the place and season of cement production and by adding mineral pigments such as slate or graphite powder. The bright colors he sometimes uses are usually acrylics or pigments sprayed on while the cement is drying, or aerosols that are then eroded. His work is frequently eroded, dug, scarified or polished with various mechanical abrasives (steel wool, sandpaper, scrapers...) and by intensive washing. A thin layer or varnish is then applied to protect the materials without altering their appearance.
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