Point of view

Somewhere as beautiful as before

With this new exhibition, Julien Graizely continues to question the codes of representation like accelerated movie scenes, the artist questions the passing of time. His intuition is not to focus on a particular narrative ideas blend with one another, along the work process. The presence suggests the disappearance of the subject, like remains left in a landscape or in memories.

Julien Graizely’s practice consists in building multiple layers of motives and textures : a never-ending process of addiction and erasement. Sometimes there is barely anything left on the canvas. Nothing really ? Not exactly as the vibant colors. He intertwines flamboyant colors with graphic motives : figures then appear through the composition and open a highly narrative dimension, filled mystery and untold.

Julien Graizely’s recurrent themes – landscapes, beaches, deserts – all have a some sort of empty neutrality in common. And a sharp line of horizon. They are peaceful places where light and bodies may express themselves, meet, escape from one another, look at each other. « When light is bright, the sky is always high », Julien Graizely says. Some trees may been seen in his paintings, pine trees sometimes disguised as Floridian palm trees, with a graphic style and imagination reminiscent of his numerous trips.

When it comes to color precisely, he asks himself : « the yellow, always the yellow, why is that ? What does this particular color have to add to my pallet ? It is not that often used but French historian Michel Pastoureau names it the color of future and prosperity. When I use yellow, I feel more enclined to loose control and let what I have on my mind simply exist. I am not afraid of spoiling, ruining, redoing, erasing, writing and facing. My characters used to turn their back to the viewer, now they look at them stright in the eyes. They speak and write to them. Those short sentences, puns or even song titles are usually written on the walls of my studio or left on tiny pieces of paper. This time I decided they had a place in my paintings. A possible way to explore new places ? »

Olivier Waltman
Paris, february 2022


« What to do, what to paint after such a peculiar 2020 ? For his fourth solo exhibition with the gallery, Julien Graizely aims to question our world, as frozen and dark as it appears and wonders what kind of reality his artistic practice could oppose to it.

In the midst of a time that held its breath, he saw the opportunity of a possible contemplation. The vast natural landscapes of the Charente region where he lives, the pine tree forests in Landes (South-West of France) where he endlessly wanders as well as the houses of the Atlantic shores helped set the frame of his new body of works. But the artist also decided to immerse himself anew in the lights and colours that he discovered during his residency program in Miami the previous year, 2019. As if driven by a vital force, the bright and contrasted tones, reminiscent of his time in Florida, bring life to the void and the silence of those French landscapes. They convey an energy with which the artist’s gesture expresses a strong and tormented movement.

Out of this unexpected production, Julien Graizely selected ten works that not only speak about immobility and wait but also of strength and expectation. His joyous expressionistic style gives a prominent importance to the motive : the imagination may freely spread out and reach fictional, and – why not ? – romantic terrotories. Thus, Julien Graizely’s work reasserts the capacity of the painting to open a mental space, sensitive, vibrant, most intimate and full of possibilities. »

Olivier Waltman
Paris, January 2021


In the exhibition, the young artist pursues an exploration of themes that have underlined his work since the beginning of his artistic career: the temporality of time and the imprint left by an individual as much on a landscape as in a memory.

Similar to accelerated film scenes, the oeuvres of Julien Graizely reveal a double dynamic, firstly of concentration and secondly of expansion. His work focuses on the passing of time and fleeting moments. He paints and erases his subjects to create a superimposition of each form that reveals various moments in time. The presence and vanishing of the figures are superimposed with the artist’s memory, a representation of Julien Graizely’s allegory on life. Concentrated on the collection of paintings that represent the human condition, the artist transports these illustrations into momentary yet essential instances permitting the viewer to access the most intimate of memories. The human condition.

The artist displays a world filled with rich senses, bright and powerful lighting, a generous approach – almost rapacious- to drawing, a sensuality that reminds one of beaches where bodies are liberated and exposed in a vibrant environment.

The title of the exhibition, Surexposition, describes the flux of ideas and lines in Julien Graizely’s research process. The cinematographic influence is manifested through the use of  framing and lighting that recall film stills. The artist displays a strong interest in drawing and the composition of super-exposed images.

Paris, september 2018