Bernay. Two artists are looking for a place

“Panel 1 ″ is the first joint creation of the two artists. © Coralie Maux-Renard

It was their meeting at the bar “Les Saltimbanques” that made the two artists look for a place to create works together. The two painters exhibited successively at this place. “On the evening of the exhibition, we had a drink and we talked about how it would be good to be able to have a dedicated space instead of everyone working at home,” says Alexandre Dusapin. The latter, although he had studied at Beaux-Arts and then in architecture, resumed painting in December 2021. He settled for a few months in Bernay (Eure), and at present has no place devoted to creation. With him you have to cover everything and he does not necessarily have the space, the equipment, the ability to store the works and put paint everywhere. “I’m not going to put chemicals in the turf, so we’re looking for a place where we can really let go and continue our journey,” he says.

Vincent Rodrigues, aka Rodrigue, when he signs his paintings, is in the same situation. He can not paint, when it suits him, in his residence in Broglie. Previously in the medico-social field, he now wants to make painting his main activity.

Rodrigue with his works, exhibited at Saltimbanques.
Rodrigue with his works, exhibited at Saltimbanques. © DR

Difficulty finding

“We told ourselves we needed a space large enough to let go artistically,” Alexandre Dusapin confides. For this they need a garage or a shed, ideally 100 m2, for rent at the moment. “What would really be useful for us would be to invest in a place as quickly as possible that meets our criteria,” he adds.

In June 2022, the two friends began searching Bernay, first in the center, then gradually around. “There are two or three tracks, but the places that interest us, we can not find the owners,” laments the young man. They therefore consulted with the cadastral level registers in the department of Eure. “We also face situations where the information provided by the administration lacks a connection to the reality of the place,” says Vincent Rodrigues, a painter for thirty years. There is a garage behind the station which seems good to us, we had the address of the owner but the information we have does not coincide. As a last resort, we sent a registered letter to the address to find out if the owner was well there and ask her if there was an opportunity to meet her to talk about our project, ”he takes as an example.

A place to create together

If this space allows them to paint each on their side, it would also promote the rapprochement between the two men artistically. After their first joint work, “panel 1”, unnamed so as not to affect the viewer’s reading, they are eager to be able to reproduce this experience on their premises. “We had a blast doing it, we are happy because we are two separate entities, but we agree,” describes Vincent Rodrigues. “We preserve our individual, graphic and artistic identity, and at the same time we agree to create together.” .

Thus, Rodrigue’s pointillism mixes with Alexandre Dusapin’s imaginary subjects, leaving a wealth of doors that open into different universes. Since the young painter likes to make works on various supports, plastic, old canvases or kraft paper, this panel consists of a collection of cardboard. “We’re going to make a lot of others so you need a big space,” the latter supports.

Alexandre Dusapin in front of one of his works.
Alexandre Dusapin in front of one of his works. © Coralie Maux-Renard

Create a social connection

“We feel that there is an emulation in Bernay, we realize that there is an artistic fashion that is there, underground, but that fails to create a link to be able to get together, work together,” describes Vincent Rodrigues . This social place is what they would like to decorate in their new studio about another time so that artists and other residents can meet. “It’s the idea of ​​the open workshop, if anyone ever wants to come and talk, and it can create calls, ideas or even other projects for the city,” suggests Alexandre Dusapin. This place would also allow them to exhibit their work, individually and collectively, as well as other people’s if we have the space available, ‘he adds.

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The two artists deplore the lack of promotion of art in the city, even though there are several galleries. “This is not the interest of art and the city of history,” regrets Alexandre Dusapin. “Art is a social media and it’s important to us,” says Vincent Rodrigues.

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