Point De Vue

Opening: 04.11.2021, Duration: 04.12.2021

The Blender Gallery has the pleasure to present “Point de Vue”, Manon Steyaert’s first solo show in Greece which includes a range of artworks from known pieces to never shown before works.

The 30 artworks displayed in the gallery, have been made by the artist especially for the show and emphasize her unique practice and creativity. Living in a new demanding reality of constant restrictions and prohibitions, this exhibition urges us to reconsider and question our own understanding of art by thinking outside the box. Manon Steyaert gives to the public the chance to reflect on the idea of paintings as sculptures and sculptures as paintings and the whole relationship between the two mediums by creating works that do not fall into just one category. “Point de Vue” is French for “Point of View”, a topic which Steyaert believes to be very present in her practice at the moment. Through the body of work presented in this show, Steyaert challenges the public’s point of view and questions their perception about the mediums of painting and sculpture while bringing them together to create a medium in limbo. Over the last year the artist has predominantly used silicone in her works, creating luscious draping on plinths to semi-transparent pieces that almost float before the viewer’s eyes. While this material continues to fascinate her, there is a part during the creative process that she would like to alter. The fact that her hand is only ever-present in the manufacturing of the material and much less in the end product is the actual factor that led her to create her watercolour paintings all the way to large works that contain gestural marks. Like that, the artist creates these works where the gesture is more visible, in order to portray her hand and make the viewer feel her presence within the artwork. When Steyaert created these specific works, she felt a strong connection to the aspect of painting and even though it was distinguished as a sculpture she allowed these gestures to give almost a nod to it. Using bright colours, the artist grabs a viewer’s attention, bringing them closer to the work, allowing them to analyze the surface to then confuse them as to what they are looking at. The newest artworks included in “Point of Vue” are dual coloured silicone tiles. By using a darker and lighter tone, the artist highlights the lines that run through the work. These pieces were inspired by the tiles Steyaert collected throughout her time in Portugal in 2020 for an artist residency. While seeing the tiles as building blocks to a large structure, Steyaert’s silicone tiles function the same way-for her final silicone artworks- as a kind of building blocks to get to an end/finished work. The tiles are a tactile and three-dimensional representation of the watercolour paintings, bringing a sculpture out of the painting. “Point de Vue” challenges viewers to discourse openly about what they think they are seeing. The idea that lies behind an artwork is Steyaert’s true curiosity while as she mentions art has rarely ever been able to be pinned down to one thing. Steyaert welcomes people’s perception of her work and tries to confuse it through her combination of materials and colours. Manon Steyaert, [French (b.1996)], lives and works in London. The artist completed her 1-year foundation at CSM, 3-years undergrad degree at CSM in Fine Art (2015-2018) and 1-year masters in Fine Art at Chelsea College of Art (2018-2019). Wanting to originally work in Fashion, Steyaert finds inspiration from fabrics and their possibilities to create forms, relating this to the canvas on a stretcher and the relationship between form and structure. Wanting to see her materials live on their own, standing on their own “feet” away from the canvas frame, Steyaert has been exploring this idea through the medium of the instillation with larger silicone works. While layering coloured silicone sheets over one another, wrapped around the canvas, the artist creates a three-dimension separation of colours within the painting.

Curation and text by Penny Nikolaou