Singulart Artists Talk New Exhibition in Paris

Singulart Exhibition in Le Cinq Codet in Paris

A selection of Singulart’s painters and sculptors will this week form part of an exhibition at Le Cinq Codet – a five-star hotel in the heart of Paris. We took time out with Petra Tödter, Hildegarde Handsaeme, Olivier Messas and Laurent Prudot to delve into the processes, inspirations and perspectives that brought their versatile artworks to life.

It’s time to take you on a tour of the hotel, one artist at a time…

Reception: Petra Tödter

Petra Tödter is an established German artist, for whom geometric structures, strong colours and the reduction of shapes form the basis of her artistic expression.

Artist PetraTödter

Could you please tell us a bit about how you create your works, and any particular effect you’d like them to have on the viewer?

First, I create paper dummies. Then I assemble the objects using my chosen materials: wood (see ‘Schönheitsfehler’) or cardboard (see ‘Farbfächer’). All forms consist of individual parts and are hollow inside; to hang them later, I insert holes on the back.

In terms of applying color in acrylic paint, this takes place when the object is ready in its raw form. I find it exciting to create different perspectives through repetitions and breaks in colors, shapes and surfaces, which then destabilize the viewer and invite them to take a closer look.

If you had to define your artistic style in 3 words, what would they be?

Constructive, minimalist and colorful.

Your works will be displayed in the hotel’s reception area… what excites you about the thought of your geometric designs welcoming guests? 

It makes me happy when people feel inspired by my artwork. I think it’s especially great when my colored objects trigger emotions in the viewers, make them think and enrich them.

'Farbfächer' by Petra Tödter.
‘Farbfächer’ by Petra Tödter.

Lobby: Hildegarde Handsaeme

Hildegarde Handsaeme is an experienced Belgian painter whose balanced, sensual and constructivist works act as odes to women. Five of her paintings will appear in Le 5 Codet’s exhibition: ‘Confused,’ ‘L’oiseau de Liberté,’ ‘Musical Symbiosis,’ ‘Flying Lovers’ and ‘Consolation.’

Hildegarde Handsaeme

Could you please tell us a bit about one of the pieces you will be showing in the hotel: how you created it and any particular effect you’d like it to have on the viewer?

All my paintings begin in the same way. I never use a model. When I have an idea, I try to elaborate on it by using a constructive line that balances the canvas as I develop the drawing. This line will usually take an abstract form. Once the subject is in pencil on canvas, I then try to bring the work even further into balance with the right colors. I use acrylic paint, and apply the black contours by hand using a fine brush.

I never impose a specific message on the viewer, but perhaps no message is a message in itself … in any case, I leave each person completely free to interpret each piece in their own way.

What is your view of the fusion of art and interior design? How do they compliment each other?

I am rather aesthetically oriented, so I believe that each painting should have its own place in an interior space and be able to come into its own. For me it is very important that the painting is hanging in the right way: not too high, not too low, ideally at eye level, and that it simultaneously exists in balance with the rest of the interior.

Your works will be displayed in the hotel lobby… how does it make you feel to picture people pondering your creations as they move about the hotel?

Of course it is nice and I feel honored that my work will be shown in the lobby. The idea of people looking at my work there is exciting. I hope that it gives people a calm feeling, and prompts a smile when they discover the humor in them or when the colors bring them a good feeling.

'Flying Lovers', one of Handsaeme's paintings that will displayed at the exhibition.
‘Flying Lovers’, one of Handsaeme’s paintings that will displayed at the exhibition.

Restaurant: Olivier Messas

Olivier Messas is a talented painter, photographer and sculptor who grew up in France, and whose artistic creation provides him both an escape from the world and an opportunity to express his Vietnamese cultural heritage.

Which artwork of yours will be featured in the hotel?

The artwork is a painting titled ‘Reverie,’ from my series ‘Head in the clouds’ (2013.)

Could you please tell us a bit about it?

This artwork is my favourite painting. It’s mixed media on canvas, which is one of my preferred creative techniques. I mix the material (paper, fine sand, light structuring paste, pumice mortar ) and the colors (first acrylic, then oil.) This technical process usually takes priority when creating this kind of artwork, but the emotional essence is also a primary focus. Throughout the composition, and particularly the way the colours play together, emotion and light are very important.

This particular artwork was inspired by one of my favorite Chinese abstract artists: Zao Wou-Ki.

Your works will be displayed in the restaurant area… How does it make you feel to picture people pondering your paintings as they spend jovial moments together, eating and chatting?

Regardless of the kind of space my works are shown in, I am very happy if people can spend jovial time together in their company. Happiness and freedom are very important to me and if they can be combined with art… It just makes me happy!

Reverie by Olivier Messas

Restaurant: Laurent Prudot

Joining Messas in the hotel’s sleek dining space will be Laurent Prudot, an experienced French artist who will show 3 paintings, one of which is custom-made for the occasion. 

Laurent Prudot

Can you tell us a bit about the artwork you created especially for the exhibition?

I composed a large-format painting which measures 195 x 114 cm. This was a departure from my habitual practice, and therefore proved quite the challenge. But I really enjoyed the experience!

Describe your artistic approach for us.

My artistic conception and approach is always the same: it’s a process of exploring all the possible variations and vibrations contained in an image, all the conditions of surface and colour. I always seek to play with intensity: between the force of the colours that intertwine and the black that forms alongside them. My goal is to create works that sometimes vibrate so much it’s hard to look at them; but when you approach the painting more closely, all sorts of details are revealed and interceptibly analysed by the brain.

Tell us about the tool that you’ve created: ‘LE MONOTEMPREINTE.’

Well, for each of my works, I work with acrylic and resin to achieve a transparent quality. I then use a tool that I invented myself: ‘LE MONOTEMPREINTE.’ It serves simultaneously as a stamp, monotype, a tool to apply paint… and creates random results. The uncertainty of its application means that I never know if the canvas will turn out successfully; despite my extensive experience using this tool, sometimes I end up disappointed, and the canvas goes in the trash… but that’s the thrill of being an artist.

Prudot’s custom-made painting for the upcoming exhibition.

The work of these four artists will be unveiled in Hotel Le Cinq Codet on 5th March, 2019, where they will remain exhibited for 2 months.