Fabienne Verdier

© Dolores Marat

Fabienne Verdier creates a surprising image when she wields a 70 kg paintbrush, attached to ten metres of rope, held around the waist or on the handlebars of a bicycle. For this calligraphic painter, whose practice represents the point of intersection between painting and Taoist spirituality, everything comes back to “the act of painting”. From her preparatory ascetism to the eventual destruction of the canvas, via a vertical form of painting that engages the whole body, the act of painting becomes “the gesture that strikes down form”. Her goal is “authenticity”, a spontaneous mode of expression. Her monumental canvases are part calligraphy, part abstract symbol, and dense vibrant colours form the background to which black ink is applied, or, in certain series, red or blue lines.

Fabienne Verdier was born in Paris in 1962. After studying at the École Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Toulouse, she left for China in 1984 where, for ten years, she learned ascetic practice from one of the last masters of Chinese calligraphy. Back in France, enriched and emancipated by this long teaching, she found her own language.

Her works are regularly exhibited in Europe and feature in numerous collections, including those of the Centre Pompidou (Musée National d’Art Moderne), the Musée Cernuschi, or the H. Looser Foundation, in Zurich. She has also published several books that combine meditative images and texts, as well as the story of her training in China, Passagère du Silence (2005).




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