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An Unconventional Artist


Pascale Gaudet

Pascale Gaudet

Joy, Spontaneity And A Colorful Spirit Define Pascale Gaudet

By Cheryl Alexander

Pascale Gaudet first tapped into her creative spirit as a child interested in fashion. She designed collections of stylish clothes and even knitted sweaters with her own unique drawings and writings on them. She wrote and illustrated books, and was fascinated by drawing the straight lines she observed in houses and buildings. However, because her parents wanted her to choose a more intellectual, lucrative field, she did not pursue an education in art, fashion design or architecture.

“Although I am French, at the time my family lived in Lebanon, which was then a country in turmoil where the world of art was not at its best,” recalled Pascale. “It has quite changed since, but back then I chose another path, with languages and a MBA.”

It was not until 2005 when Pascale was living in Buenos Aires that she first began taking painting and drawing lessons with Argentine painter Juan Bernardez. Her first drawing as a student of art was inspired by a painting of a set of windows she bought because it reminded her of the windows in Lebanon, the country of her birth. “My first painting was also a copy,” said Pascale, “but taken from a book. It was a bird, in the Naïf style, drawn with little dots and more Naïf elements on an electric blue background. I gave the painting to my mother.”

This style of painting, Naïf, would begin to define Pascale’s future style as an artist.

Naïf art is defined as the spontaneous desire to draw and paint and has existed since the origins of human civilization, of which “cave paintings” are a first example. The term was initially used at the turn of the 19th century to describe the painting of Henri Rousseau, a self-taught painter admired by the “avant-garde of the time, including Picasso, Matisse and Gauguin. To create Naïf art, no specific academic preparation is required, and the artist has no obligation to use elaborate techniques or conventional thematic and chromatic approaches. Most Naïf artists are self-taught and experimental in their style, guided by simplicity, freedom of composition and sometimes shockingly colored palettes. Naïf art also expresses a sense of joy, happiness, spontaneity and an extremely suggestive form of beauty. It is known as the style of those who were “born” artists.

Though Pascale’s first paintings were copies of art she saw in books, Bernardez nudged her forward by telling her that to become a true artist, she would have to create something original. So she began to draw inspiration from her travels and the natural world around her.

“My favorite subject is nature,” she said. “It is a peaceful subject, but full of surprises and inspiration. My numerous travels inspire me too… Brazil, the Middle East, Venezuela, Tobago, Bonaire, Mexico
and more.”

On one of her trips to Brazil, Pascale traveled between Rio de Janeiro and a fishing village called Paraty, where she became fascinated by the lush vegetation and colorful flowers. Her first collection was inspired by the Brazilian palm trees, embellished with her Naïf touch; the first painting she sold was a colorful Naïf flower.

In addition to her study with Bernardez, Pascale also studied with Colorado painter Robert Weatherford, who became a guiding voice for her. Though her style and ideas are her own, she credits Weatherford with encouraging her to experiment with a variety in her work. Pascale says she learned an important lesson from each of these artists. From Bernardez, she learned the importance of creating balance in a piece. From Weatherford, she learned to step outside her comfort zone to try painting in different styles and with different colors.

As a self-taught artist, too, she’s learned a lot from trial and error. Patience, she believes, was her first self-taught lesson and the quality which brings greatness to her work. An artist’s dedication to the work and patience with the evolution – knowing it is a work in process, and that it might still need a little something – is what moves it from simply an expression on canvas to a work of art.

“Sometimes paintings don’t turn out the way we imagine,” she said. “I can say to myself, ‘Well today, I am going to paint a nice and peaceful piece,’ but then it ends up being a totally different story. Also, at times, one can lose touch with a piece. One must leave it, then come back with fresh insight and a completely different view.”

As Pascale has applied these lessons, her Naïf style has expanded to include more contemporary pieces. She believes that artists should allow themselves a chance to try and express themselves in as many genres as they wish — and also as many colors as they wish. Her artistic mission to make others happy is best delivered through color. Pascale is satisfied by a colorful painting against a white wall or even by putting a colorful painting on a colorful wall, and believes that her pieces stand out because they are eye-catching, yet restful to observe.

“In one thing, I am constant,” she said. “Colors, colors and colors…”

Her future plans include an exhibit in Spain and to develop connections with designers. In March, Pascale showed at Nuevo Centro Cultural del Padre Vallet, an art center located near Madrid, where she did well. In November, she returns to Madrid to the Spanish Association of Painters of Sculptors’ headquarters for a solo show of 35 paintings entitled “There is Something about Nature…” Other domestic and international shows, a collection of wallpapers and book illustrations are also in her future.

“Though my paintings will always be my primary form of expression, I don’t limit my scope of art to paint on a canvas,” she said. “In fact, I think that many things in life are a work of art, not only paintings. The birth of a child is a work of art; the growing of a plant or a flower is also a work of art. Painting is only a representation of the wonderful world that surrounds us. A painter simply puts it in a frame, so it is visible to others.”

Visit pascalegaudet.com for more information on the artist.

 

Illusions

“Illusions”

DISCOVERY

“Discovery”

FLY-ME-TO-THE-MOON

“Fly Me To The Moon”

EUPHORIA

“Euphoria”

COLORFUL-ENCOUN-TER

“Colorful Encounter”

BEYOND-THE-INFINITY-II

“Beyond The Infinity II”

“My Dream Palm Tree VI”

“My Dream Palm Tree VI”

“Kalkhu”

“Kalkhu”

“In A Joyful State Of Mind”

“In A Joyful State Of Mind”


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