The colours of Rome
In the beginning, the mural paintings of Livia's house, Augustus's third wife, greatly impressed Renée-Paule Danthine; it was a sort of idyllic garden that combined all the seasons. And then there were the walls of Rome that the artist discovered while walking through the city, on which we can see the passage of time…
If the 2015 series"In Suspension" celebrated the present, this exhibit makes us consider the passage of time.
Here, no more paper jams! For this theme, the artist paints on canvas with oil, wax and pigments. The painting is patiently constructed in successive layers with different textures. For her, color reigns supreme – it is mixed until it reaches the desired intensity, attaining just the right balances and counterbalances.
The city walls have been shaped by men and marked by bad weather. The paintings have faded, although they may even appear very fresh by sheer contrast. The living presences fade away like the birds of the Roman villas or the human silhouettes that drift away until they disappear. The chickens, the thrushes, and the grenades are swallowed by the passage of time. Written signs disappear. Yet, here and there, a leaf, a twig of ivy, are witness to the vigor of life.
Renée-Paule Danthine gives the same treatment to old or new walls. Transparency is essential, the past emerges. And here, the spectator touches time, which passes now and forever. It is as if the artist, through her work, scratched the surface of the canvas, digging into time to reveal an ancient past. The canvas becomes the wall, a witness for our history.
M. Saint Siffre