Ceramic sculptures, perforated papers, installations and in situ.

Nathalie Doyen, born in Algeria in June 14th, 1964. 

Nathalie Doyen crafts her art in a soft simplicity. She experiments, following her intuition, and meticulously creates a multitude of modules, which, once assembled, compose a graphic and musical space, in which she questions structure, as well as movement, rhythm and time.

Each one of her exhibits becomes a manifestation of a delicate state in which a vast, yet invisible process of creation is revealed. Her “setting in sight” (positioning) can be likened to an ephemeral crystallization of research into perpetual transformations. Her “journey scrolls” are symbolic of this process: never exposed or revealed to the visitor, they are nevertheless fundamental in the creative journey of the artist.

Crafted patiently over the years, they are subjective recordings of fragments of the world, concealing a great number of drawings, sifted from elements of the landscape and the environment.

It is in these sets of references that the artist chooses the structures for the majority of her compositions. She relies on various resources to assist her in the concretisation of the graphic modules, but, more often, this ceramist by formation devotes herself to the pleasure of working with earth. Just like “journey scrolls” which have no beginning or end, the compositions resulting from the assembly of these modules have a rhythm of their own: cyclic, indefinite, sequential….

Pieces of artwork like  “Passage” – a photographic testimony within a snow-covered landscape of a graphic transcription by the artist – reveal the transitory character of her artworks.

They are fashioned by following a certain number of construction formulas, each of which is adapted to its proper presentation space.

The specific rhythm of Nathalie Doyen’s artwork could be compared to improvisations in music, where the unfolding as a whole is fixed but where the details are determined by chance and place; a musical form that is open to the choices of its interpreter. A proximity rapport is necessary to perceive, beyond the actual compositions, the richness of the notes that constitute the compositions. The artist effectively designs her works as sober partitions that reveal many vibrations, which are open to multiple interpretations. To this effect, light and shadow, as well as their respective modulations, play a part in determining the finishing touches of her work: they evoke subtle variations in the many shades of white that are used in her artwork. The artist has also designed several works of art that offer the visitor – in a contemplative or playful way – the possibility of approaching her artwork in an exponential number of combinations.

Written by Bénédicte MERLAND – February, 2003.