Serge CLEMENT 1995
size 70cm x 100cm/27.5”x39.5”
Born in Mazieres en Gatine, France in 1933, Serge Clément graduated with honors from L’Ecole des Arts Appliqués in Paris. His first solo show was in Paris in 1960, and he has numerous solo exhibitions with Galerie Beaubourg in Paris, and other galleries in France, Italy and the United States. During the 1960s and 1970s, he worked for major publishers and advertising companies and won the coveted “City of Paris” award several times. Serge Clément and Marina Kamena began making collaborative art in 1996. Their work reflects decades of studying Western European art from the Renaissance onward, and their style of collaboration is modeled on the ateliers of the Renaissance. The results are offbeat, clever works of enormous craftsmanship that outguess the viewer. The paintings are delicate, small figurative works of subtle realism, painstakingly painted, lyrical and subdued. In their sculptures-cum-paintings, three-dimensional clay figures in a gallery observe miniature framed reproductions of original works the couple has painted. (Some of the original works are also on display.) Table Rase, the focal piece of the exhibition, shows an unclothed man looking in a mirror. He sits bareback and backward on a horse that seems to be speaking into a microphone. At the horses feet are scattered many used tubes of paint. The horse’s tail is a paintbrush. The studiolos--three-dimensional paintings of polymer resin, clay, screw, nails, beads, acrylic and oil paints, wire and electricity--use multiple perspectives and interior lighting to create new impressions of familiar scenes. Drawing from influences as diverse as Edward Hopper, the Bible, Greek mythology, and Impressionism, the studiolos were inspired by Italian Renaissance galleries in which “the prince or patron would let the artist decorate following his passions,” says Kamena. Serge Clément’s and Marina Kamena’s erotic drawings set in the French countryside and in Manhattan are homages to Hokusai’s Hundred Views of Mount Fuji (1834). Their book of the drawings Dessins Indiscrets autour de la Sainte Victoire (Indiscreet Drawings on the Theme of Mt. Sainte Victoire) is a real gem if you can fins a copy.